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What a Month!

March 31, 2017

So Long Arts Education Month

Visiting LEAPS of Imagination program

Happy last day of March and good-bye to Arts Education month. During the last month I have been fortunate to travel to many parts of the state and visit amazing programs and people doing great things in ARTS EDUCATION! Yes, I am shouting that word – I am so proud of what is going on in arts education! YOU are doing amazing work for young learners across the entire state!

Below are some of the highlights of the month – certainly not all of them. But there is only so many hours in a day, so many days in a month and only so much time to blog!!! Thank you to those who invited me to visit.

  • March 4: THANK YOU to the Dancers Making a Difference performance, Noble High School. Amazing gathering of dancers from schools and community studios which raised $6730.00 that will be combined with the funds that were raised at a performance in November at Thornton Academy $3575.00 for a total of $10,305.00. In the next week the grant will be announced. Watch for the information on the blog and consider applying. Watch a clip of the performance.
  • March 8: Arts Advocacy Day, State House, Augusta. Marshwood High School student Mikayla Smith spoke passionately about the importance of arts education. (Yes, she is the daughter of Central School (South Berwick) music educator and the 2014 York County Teacher of the Year Kate Smith!). The Hall of Flags was filled with learners of all ages.
  • March 11: MALI Winter Retreat, Thomas College, Waterville – Teacher Leaders met to review phase 6 and plan ahead to phase 7. What a great day everyone had – many ideas were generated. If you are interested in applying to be a MALI Teacher Leader this year watch for the blog post in the near future.
  • March 11: Youth Art Month opening, Portland Museum of Art, a collaboration with the Maine Art Education Association.
  • March 13: Poetry Out Loud State Finals, Waterville Opera House. See and hear Gardiner Area High School senior Gabrielle Cooper, Maine’s Champ and the 10 finalists at THIS LINK.
  • March 14: Nancy Harris Frohlich founded LEAPS of Imagination and she says: “We believe that all children are imaginative thinkers, and that if we give them the opportunity to use their imaginations in school by making art, they will thrive”. To learn more about the work Nancy does with teaching artists in classrooms please CLICK HERE.
  • March 17: Maine Arts Leadership Initiative Mega Conference held at Hebron Station School, Oxford Hills School district. The day was filled with learning – MALI Teacher Leaders provided sessions on many topics. After lunch we worked collaboratively in groups to create dancers thanks to the instruction of John Morris. Below you can view one of those dances. Thanks to MALI Teacher Leader Samantha Armstrong and Curriculum Leader Heather Manchester for hosting the mega. I understand that the other teachers in the district were having a workshop day as well. They used MALI’s model for scheduling the day! 
  • March 21: Christina Warren teaches art at Jordan Small Middle School in Raymond. There is great work (and play) going on inside and outside of Christina’s classroom. She  showed me all of the wonderful George Mason artwork that has been there since the school was built in 1988.

    Christina Warren

  • March 21: Visited Portland Stage with Julianne Shea and Hannah Cordes and what a hoot these two are. Looking for great programming in theatre? Contact either of these energized educators.
  • March 22: Teaching artist and MALI Teaching Artist Leader Tim Christensen was at Prescott School for several days working with the K-6 students and their staff where they created clay pieces that make up a large Panda – the school mascot. They’re already talking about bringing Tim back in the fall.
  • March 25: Helped with the presentation awards for the Junior Duck Stamp program held at LL Beans in Portland. Freeport High School Art teacher, Kim Medsker was so proud of her student who took topic honors.

    Kim Medsker-Mehalic with her student Min Wu who took the top honors.

  • March 29: Met with Senator Angus King’s staffers to discuss educational topics so he can be better informed. Such thoughtful colleagues that we have in our state and such a wonderful opportunity to share information and ideas. And, great to hear arts educators as well as other educators address the importance of the arts educators.

I love learning about what you and your students are accomplishing!

Junior Duck Stamp program, presentations held at LL Bean

4 comments

  1. What an incredible month of accomplishments, Argy. Arts education in Maine is obviously alive and flourishing! Lucky lucky students to have so many great opportunities.


  2. Thanks for including us and Youth Art Month!

    Louisa Donelson
    Associate Educator for Youth Learning
    portlandmuseum.org

    From: me arts ed
    Reply-To: me arts ed
    Date: Friday, March 31, 2017 at 5:17 AM
    To: Louisa Donelson
    Subject: [New post] What a Month!

    Argy Nestor posted: “So Long Arts Education Month Happy last day of March and good-bye to Arts Education month. During the last month I have been fortunate to travel to many parts of the state and visit amazing programs and people doing great things in ARTS EDUCATION”


  3. Yes, students are fortunate and so are the educators – thanks for your comment Gay! ~Argy


  4. So great that the PMA and MAEA partner on such a great opportunity for Maine learners! Thank you! ~Argy



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