Archive for the ‘Professional Development’ Category

h1

Journey

November 6, 2018

Learning, learning, learning

Baltimore – I was fortunate to travel to Baltimore last week where I participated in the State Arts Agency annual professional development institute (PDI). It was an outstanding learning opportunity in both the formal sessions and informal conversations to connect with my colleagues who do similar work across the country. They all care deeply about arts education. The purpose of this year’s PDI was to continue to explore issues related to diversity, equity, access and inclusion in arts education by focusing on the intersection of different types of structural inequity and individual and community trauma, and the ways in which arts learning can promote individual and community resilience and improve equitable educational outcomes.

Our guiding question: How can state arts agency (SAA) arts education managers address trauma and individual and community resilience through arts learning? 

It guided us well and we’ve returned to our individual states with knowledge that will impact our roles at each state art agency across the US.

Helsinki, Finland –  I’m in Helsinki this week attending the hundrED Innovation Summit. Lindsay Pinchbeck, founder and director of Sweet Tree Arts, and I were invited to attend the HundrED summit in Finland after recently being selected as Ambassadors for the program. We are excited about the learning opportunity.

You can attend virtually – the event is being streamed online. If you can participate please REGISTER!

It is Education Week in Finland so I have the opportunity to spend time in schools. I’m looking forward to learning more about their education program and specifically arts education. Fact: I learned recently that Finland has more heavy metal bands per capita than anywhere else in the world.

Finland is celebrating their hundred year birthday and the summit brings together educators from around the world to learn from each other. I’m looking forward to meeting the innovators; among them Pasi Sahlberg.

What is HundrED?

HundrED.org is a not-for-profit organization that discovers inspiring innovations in K12 education. HundrED’s goal is to help improve education and inspire a grassroots movement through encouraging pedagogically sound, ambitious innovations to spread across the world.

The purpose of education is to help every child flourish, no matter what happens in life. In a fast-changing world, education must adapt to keep up. The world is full of inspiring innovations, but they can struggle to spread beyond their immediate environments. That’s why HundrED discovers, researches and shares impactful and scalable K12 innovations with the world, for free.

I hope you will have a chance to look at the HundrED website and check out their resources. Of course, I will be sharing my learning on the blog.

Education Week

Helsinki Education Week is an annual, week-long festival with a dual purpose: to make visible all of the exemplary work done in the capital’s schools, while also learning lessons from the rest of the world by collaborating with international education specialists visiting the city. The Helsinki Education Week’s lead organizer is the City of Helsinki and its Education Department and its official partners are HundrED and Helsingin Sanomat.

Embracing Education in All Schools 

h1

New Experiences – Raegan’s Story

October 15, 2018

“Winging It” by Raegan Russell

Raegan Russell is a visual art educator at Berwick Academy who was on sabbatical last year. I hope her story inspires you (and perhaps your students) to think about challenging yourself in a new and different way. This is her story…  

This post was written by Raegan Russell for the Berwick Today Magazine, Summer 2018 issue

“View from my window this morning. I’m off to my service site and have butterflies in my stomach. In addition to teaching the young women some printmaking, I’ll be learning their crafts, taking care of babies, pigs, and frogs, gardening, repairing buildings, and whatever else they ask…”

So began the first days of my sabbatical, for which I traveled in Southeast Asia for service, exploration, and art-making. Early on, I joked to my students and colleagues that I was taking a gap year, a semester abroad, or some version of the Eat, Pray, Love journey. For two months, I lived out of a backpack, stayed in hostels or homestays, and sought out local restaurants, cheap digs, and real communities. I traveled to Thailand, where I worked with women and children in crisis outside of Chiang Mai, then on to the temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia, and later explored the bustling cities and stunning beauty of both the landscape and the people of Vietnam. The trip was an adventure for me, and even though I consider myself a well-seasoned traveler, I knew that it would throw me out of my comfort zone and challenge me.

“Highlights from this weekend’s trek to Ba Panden village in the hills north of Chiang Mai. Eva and I hiked 9km up to the village of the Lahu people. I swam in a cool waterfall, rode a raft down river, hiked through bamboo forests and rubber trees, and was kept up all night by a pack of crowing roosters…”

Throughout my trip, I had my sketchbook by my side. I drew the ancient Bodhi trees in Chiang Mai, the temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia, and the motorbikes of Hanoi. As I was drawing Ta Prohm, a beautiful temple nearly overtaken by lush trees and moss, a tourist questioned me about why I didn’t just take a picture of it. I answered truthfully that “this is how I notice and experience things. I will remember the heat, the smells, the beauty, and even the discomfort of sitting here on this hard rock when I look back at this drawing.” The sketchbook drawings from my trip became the springboard for the work that I have taken on since I have been home and in my studio in South Berwick. As an educator who has always balanced teaching with studio practice, this sabbatical has given me the rare gift of time to develop new work. The subject matter of my new paintings has pulled closer to home, and the vibe of the work is exploratory and a truthful expression of how I experience the world.

“Yesterday, I made my way to Wat U Mong, where I found the oldest (?) Bodhi tree in Chiang Mai. It took some getting to, but I was able to paint for several hours directly from the tree. This was an experience I will not forget.”

Nearly two days after I took off from JFK on a cold evening in January that made me rethink my choice to travel light (with only a light down jacket that could roll up into the size of a softball), I landed in Thailand. I had specifically sought out a service opportunity that focused on women’s empowerment, and found the perfect project in the northern hills near Chiang Mai.

After a three-day orientation on Thai language and culture, I began my service project at the Wildflower Home, a shelter for single women and their children directed by two intrepid and compassionate women, sisters Anurak and Siripon. My mornings were spent minding the children in the daycare and teaching the mothers printmaking and artists’ books in the afternoons. The artists’ books were a hit, as many of the mothers transformed them into baby books and journals, quickly discovering that they could sell them with the many other handcrafts and goods they make.

All of this work was accomplished without a shared language between us; I learned a little Thai and they learned a little English. We became friends and laughed together while working. They welcomed me into their lives in ways that I never expected. Dao, a mother who headed the kitchen duties, taught me how to make Khao Soi, the region’s sublime dish of coconut milk, chili, and curry noodles over the wood fire stove in the home’s kitchen. The older children knew me as the art-auntie and would join in on our printmaking projects. As I left work every day, Fa, a young mother who has a beautiful daughter SaiSai, would shout to me: “Good-bye! See you tomorrow!” as I rode from the home on the back of Dao’s motorbike to catch the bus back to Chiang Mai.

“Sketchbook Sunday: a collection of sketchbook pages from over the last few months. My sketchbook has been a place for reflection, taking time to understand the world around me, and for gathering resources for work ahead. My sketchbook has always been by my side. It’s feeling kind of precious these days.”

I am lucky to have been able to maintain an art practice beside my work as a teacher. It has taken effort on my part, but it has been made possible with Berwick’s support and professional development opportunities; 20 years of conferences, workshops, and studio sessions have not only recharged me, they have broadened my perspective and provided me with a rich community of artists and art educators as friends and supporters.

My sabbatical has given me the opportunity to push pause in an extended fashion and appreciate the things that are important. I am grateful for this gift, and the adventure is far from over. I am excited to be planning a trip to Thailand over March Break 2019, where I will take students to engage in service projects like mine in Chiang Mai.

Closer to home, I was awarded a fellowship to paint on Monhegan Island in July. I dusted off the red backpack and packed up my paints to head to another place I had never been, where I let new experiences wash over me like the waves that wash over the dark grey rocks at the water’s edge.

Watch for a future blog post describing Raegan’s fellowship opportunity on Monhegan Island. 

www.raeganrussell.com/

page3image256
page4image256
h1

Ceramic Educators Workshop

October 13, 2018

November 30

Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts is hosting a workshop for Maine K-12 ceramic art educators on November 30th from 9 am to 3 pm at Hallowell Clay Works. This workshop offers a great opportunity to fine tune your wheel throwing and glazing skills. Follow THIS LINK for the details on the workshop and sign up.

There is room for 16 participants so the recommendation is to register early, as these workshops tend to fill fast! While the workshop focuses on the fundamentals, it will not be appropriate for novices. Experience working on the wheel is required. Questions? Contact Claire Brassil at cbrassil@watershedceramics.org. Claire is the Outreach and Communications Director for Watershed.
h1

10th Annual Northern New England Collegiate Symposium

October 7, 2018

Music Education at USM, Gorham

All are welcome at the 10th Annual Northern New England Collegiate Symposium on Music Education taking place on Saturday, October 20th, from 8:30am to 4pm at the University of Southern Maine School of Music in Gorham, Maine.

The featured presenter will be Dr. Peter Webster. Dr. Webster has an impressive career as teacher, researcher, author and scholar in the field of creativity and music creativity (bio below). Bonus round – Peter is from Maine!

He will present three sessions:

  • Creativity and Creativity in Music
  • Teacher Creativity
  • Using Teacher Creativity to Help Students Discover Their Own Creativity

In between these session will be several others focusing on creative practices across K-12 settings (Escape Rooms, Wii Tech Improvisation, Composing for K-2, and so on). Lunch will be provided and 0.6 CEUs are available.

REGISTRATION

 

Peter R. Webster is currently Scholar-in-Residence at the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and is a Professor Emeritus of Music Education at the Bienen School of Music, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. He holds degrees in music education from the University of Southern Maine (BS) and the Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester (MM, PhD). He has taught in the public schools of Maine, Massachusetts, and New York. Following 14 years of teaching at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, he moved to Northwestern in 1988 and was there for 25 years prior to his retirement in 2012 from that school. His current position at USC includes half-time teaching in the Department of Music Teaching and Learning and assists the School as a Vice Dean for the Division of Scholarly and Professional Studies. He offers online courses for the graduate programs at the University of Florida at Gainesville. He assists with the music education doctoral program at Boston University.

Webster was the 2014 recipient of the Senior Researcher Award from the Society of Research in Music Education of the National Association for Music Education. He is co-author of Experiencing Music Technology, 3rd edition Updated (Cengage, 2008), a standard textbook used in introductory college courses in music technology. He is the author of Measures of Creative Thinking in Music, an exploratory tool for assessing music thinking using quasi-improvisational tasks. It is distributed for free from his website. A retrospective of his work, together with comment from scholars in the field of music education, is also distributed for free in iBook format from Apple’s iBook Store under the title Coming About and can also be found as a PDF download from his website.He has presented at many state, national, and international meetings and is a frequent keynote speaker. His published work includes over 90 articles, bools, and book chapters on creative thinking in music, music technology, and music teaching and learning. He is an editorial board member for several prestigious journals and has severed as an editor for several projects, including the MENC Handbook of Research on Music Learning (2012) and The Musical Experience: Rethinking Music Teaching and Learning (2014), both published by Oxford University Press. He is a music editor for the International Journal of Education and the Art and the College Music Society Symposium: Instructional Technologies And Methodologies.

Webster has held various administrative positions in his career, including a term as Associate Dean at the Bienen School. He served as Chair of the Department of Music Studies which included the programs of music education, musicology/ethnomusicology, music theory/cognition, and composition/technology. He has taught courses in the philosophy of music education, graduate research, music technology, measurement and assessment, and creative thinking in music. He has supervised many doctoral dissertations in music education and has been the recipient of many grants, including a landmark award from the National Association of Music Merchants to study the influence of music experiences on adult creativity in non-music fields.

If you have any questions please contact Michele Kaschub at mkaschub@maine.edu.

 

h1

MEGAT Conference

October 4, 2018

Gifted and Talented Fall Conference

Amping Up Engagement is the title of the annual fall Maine Gifted and Talented Conference being held on Friday, November 9, 2018 at the Black Bear Inn in Orono.  
The cost is $75 which includes a year of MEGAT membership. Added this year is a Student Creativity Contest. The theme is “What lights you UP?”

Register HERE!

If you have questions please contact Ruth Lyons at ruthlyons@rsu22.org.
h1

MICA – Day 2

September 29, 2018

A day filled with GREATNESS

Kaitlin Young in the Idea Lab

The Maine International Conference on the Arts (MICA) wrapped up yesterday with a very full and high spirited, exciting day. The day started with a lively performance by the Maine Taiko Drummers. The Maine Artists Idea Lab stories followed in Hannaford Hall reaching across the many “arts” lines and inspiring folks bringing many to tears.

One of the Idea Lab presenters was Sedomocha School Music Educator Kaitlin Young (Maine 2018 Teacher of the Year) who shared her “teacher” story and reminded me of the importance of “life-long learning”! All of us who call ourselves “educators” can be proud that Kaitlin represents Maine educators who are continuously striving to provide an excellent education for all learners!

The day was filled with breakout sessions on a variety of topics relating to the Maine Arts Commission (MAC) Cultural Plan – Leveraging Investment, Building Capacity, Visibility of Arts & Cultural Sector, Arts Education & Lifelong Learning, and Promoting Cultural Tourism.

Teaching, learning, and assessment panel

Just before lunch Arts EngageME presented their Inaugural Maine Arts Awards to the surprised recipients. Throughout the day there were pop-up performers including Sara Juli, Oratorio Chorale, Portland Piano Trio, Celebration Barn, Golden Oak, and MAMM students.

The PK-12 arts education sessions were informative, enlightening, and inspirational. Thank you to the following who contributed their expertise to the sessions designed especially for educators.

How do teaching, learning and assessment work together in a positive, productive standards-based Visual and Performing Arts classroom? 

Jeff Beaudry, Jen Etter, Kelly Hrenko, Michelle Kaschub, Holly Leighton, and John Morris!

Teaching artists and PK-12 arts teachers session

When Teaching Artists and Arts Teachers Connect, Students Win

Kate Smith, Brian Evans-Jones, Kris Bisson, Tim Christensen, Lori Spruce, John Morris, Carmel Collins

Empowering Your Voice for Arts Education 

Catherine Ring

MAC provides MICA biennially so if you missed it this year mark your calendar for the next one being held in 2020. It will be a great way to celebrate the Bicentennial of our state.

Catherine Ring presenting

Some of the MALI folks in attendance

h1

Conferences Underway

September 28, 2018

Super day at MICA

Kate Smith, Kara Plank from the South Berwick Lantern Fest, Argy Nestor

Yesterday was full of excitement at USM. Three opportunities were under way as part of the Pre Maine International Conference on the Arts.

The 2018 Maine State Teacher of the Year, Kaitlin Young, provided an engaging keynote at the Arts Education Pre-Conference: At the HEART of Arts Education and seeds of inspiration. Participants created action steps for their work at the school and/or community level. The day started with art, dance, and music making. Lindsay Pinchbeck took the lead on creating lanterns used in ceremony’s around the world. Kate Smith led Jambo Rafiki, an African song with dance created by Nancy Salmon.

Kate Smith, Central School Music Educator (South Berwick), received the Carol Trimble Award for her contribution to the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative! Congratulations Kate!

Others participated in the Rural Arts Development Pre-Conference. This Pre-Conference provided hands-on advice, models to emulate and a space to have conversations to address the unique needs of living in the most rural state in the nation.

The day culminated with amazing performances and a Keynote Speaker Maryo Gard Ewell on Rural Community Development in and Through the Arts.

This is the third MICA – the first was held at the University of Maine, Orono, the second in Lewiston, 2016. We’re happy to be on the USM campus.

MICA continues TODAY at USM, Portland campus, Abromson Center! If you have not registered it’s not too late, arrive at the Portland campus at 7:30 to register!

 

John Morris and Nancy Salmon dancing in the processional.

%d bloggers like this: