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MALI Summer Conference – Success!

June 29, 2016

Opportunity!

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Yesterday at Wishcamper, USM in Portland, 68 arts educators convened for the Maine Arts Commission Maine Arts Leadership Initiative (MALI) Summer Conference. The day was filled with listening, speaking, demonstrating, networking, and learning, learning, learning. The feedback provided by participants shows an appreciation for the opportunity and all 14 workshops scored very high!

IMG_2291One educator said: “It is so nice to be able to talk with other arts educators about their views”. Yes, these were all arts educators conversing with other arts educators – the same tribe, our peeps, educators who share a basic understanding about what we contribute in the world. Another participate was grateful to know that “Others are going through the same frustrations as I am”. 

The Maine Arts Assessment website is filled with a variety of resources. One person said: “The MALI website is FULL of resources to help me with all I do in my music classroom and also with communication with colleagues and administrators”.

In the Creativity workshop participants learned about one of the resources in the MALI Resource Bank. It is a good one to use with your colleagues (arts and non-arts). One participant in the session’s feedback was: “Great conversations about creativity. This is something I normally don’t get to do.”

IMG_2293One of my favorite feedback comments of the day is not about assessment or standards or arts skills but about a broader critical piece of what we do: “I learned about helping children to become fearless about making a mistake – mistakes are okay.”

WHO ATTENDED?

  • PK-12 Arts educators
  • Higher ed instructors
  • Maine and NH arts educators
  • Dance, Music, and Visual Arts educators
  • Teaching Artists
  • Science, Media Arts, and Technology teachers
  • Pre-service teachers, new to teaching teachers, and  veteran teachers

WHAT ELSE DID THEY LEARN?

  • Students can create an ensemble at all levels that are student led.
  • Allowing students to take ownership in their concerts.
  • Starting students transposing is not impossible.
  • That engaging students in ownership of curriculum and content design can help teach competencies and keep them engaged in other curriculum goals.
  • More evidence for choice and student advocacy – yahoo!
  • Practical applications of the Studio Habits…tying them to the Guiding Principles.
  • Crating crosswalks between MLR, NCAS and HOM is a great advocacy tool.
  • To focus on speaking about the arts using academic language

IMG_2290WHAT QUESTIONS DID PARTICIPANTS HAVE AT THE END OF EACH WORKSHOP?

  • Why does it seem like great initiatives already being used by art educators are consistently overlooked by admin even when the information is shared by teachers?
  • How does this work when students use these techniques on their own artwork?
  • How do I ensure that every student has access to technology and able to access the assignments this way?
  • Can we eliminate grade levels in proficiency based education?
  • Why can’t administrators answer questions about applying competency grading to ensembles?
  • How can using Google Classroom be used in advocacy for the arts efforts?
  • What more creative ways are there to meet with classes?- I have 750+ students in my 3rd-5th school with block scheduling for math and reading – very little flexible time.

GREAT BIG THANKS TO THE WORKSHOP PRESENTERS – MALI TEACHER LEADERS, LEADERSHIP TEAM MEMBERS plus 1!

  • IMG_2284Theresa Cerceo
  • Jake Sturtevant
  • Jan Gill
  • Danette Kerrigan
  • Sue Beaulier
  • Jen Etter
  • Rob Westerberg
  • Iva Damon
  • Elise Bothel
  • Patti Gordan
  • Holly Leighton
  • Nancy Kinkade
  • Mandi Mitchell
  • Samantha Armstrong
  • John Morris

HEARTFELT APPRECIATION TO THE MALI LEADERSHIP TEAM FOR HELP IN PLANNING

  • Catherine Ring
  • Rob Westerberg
  • Kate Smith
  • Theresa Cerceo
  • John Morris
  • Barb Vinal
  • Pamela Kinsey
  • Beth Lambert
  • Jeff Beaudry

IMG_2287If you couldn’t join us yesterday some of the workshop leaders provided their resources and they are posted online on the Maine Arts Assessment site. You can access them by CLICKING HERE.

MALI has another opportunity for Teaching Artists coming up in August – watch for the blog post that will provide details and registration information. During the 2016-17 school year there will be multiple professional development opportunities as well.

If you have any questions about MALI or any other Maine Arts Commission program please contact me at argy.nestor@maine.gov.

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