Posts Tagged ‘Arts Education:Leading the Way’


Getting Ready-Leading the Way

October 22, 2013

Just around the corner!


Visual Arts Director Julie Horn and Chris Higgins Administrative Assistant work on preparing name tags

Preparing for a conference is time consuming and takes several months but the last week before the event is pretty intense! This week is no exception. Yesterday was spent on many details including copying, creating nametags, individual schedules, checking numbers, names, stuffing folders, etc. The more I rush to complete the tasks the ‘to do’ list seems to grow longer.

I think back to the first statewide arts education conference that I helped plan in 2007 and I realize how much I’ve learned over the years. Carol Trimble who was the Executive Director of Maine Alliance for Arts Education and I periodically chat about that conference which was held at The Samoset in Rockport with almost 300 attendees. We turned away several teachers since there wasn’t enough space. Scott Shuler gave the keynote, Karen Montanaro and Camden Hills singers performed at the Farnsworth reception and we had over 25 workshops. The next one was held in 2009 at Point Lookout with the 2007 National Teacher of the Year, music teacher Andrea Peterson provided the keynote and First Lady Karen Baldacci danced with us at the opening evening reception. In 2011 the biennial conference was held at USM and was focused on the first teacher leader group of the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative. It was a fabulous success – teachers teaching teachers created a huge learning environment for all attendees. Each conference was unique and provided fabulous learning opportunities.

I am really looking forward to the conference this Thursday, October 24, Arts Education: Leading the Way. You can still register, there is still space in some workshops. Lynn Tuttle will provide an update on the National Core Arts Standards during the opening session. I am guessing it won’t just be educational but also fun! The door prizes will be given during the closing (I need to remember a hat and funny glasses) along with a performance by the University Singers. We are thrilled to be having music students from UMaine attending and providing assistance! Thank you to Laura Artesani for her help with the details and arrangements!

Work details are also happening for the Maine International Conference on the Arts being held in the same location on Friday and Saturday. If you are interested in attending either conference please go to for information and for a link to registration.

I need to get back to the details…. I know I will see at least 185 (last count from registration) of you on Thursday – YAHOOOOOOOO!


Stacking Wood

October 21, 2013

What’s it Like?

IMG_3654This weekend at my home we cut, split, and stacked our fire wood for the winter. It is an activity that I really enjoy, especially when the weather is just right. You might just ask so what is “just right” for wood stacking? Not too cold, not too hot, blue sky, and just the right amount of sunshine. We had it all this weekend. Stacking the wood is an activity that brings back fond memories of when my children were small and they would contribute and feel so useful as they carried their one stick of wood at a time to the wood shed. And, use their plastic chain saws to pretend they were cutting the wood. It brings a smile to my face as does their participation as ‘adults’. Instead of us inviting our friends to join us for a day of wood cutting and sharing a spaghetti feed at the end of the day, they bring their friends. What fun!

IMG_3665Cutting the wood gives me a great deal of satisfaction. Early in the process all the wood is sitting there staring me in the face and I wonder, will we get this done in the time planned? And the end of the day comes, I am feeling exhilarated that the task is accomplished!

It is not unlike the work of professional development planning for Maine arts educators. Teachers have to be in the right place with the right temperature to participate. This week is a big one for Maine arts teachers. And, all of you are invited to join in on the FUN! On the calendar this week:

  • Today, Monday, October 21 is the last day to contribute your feedback on the National Core Arts Standards high school draft that were released for public comment on September 30.  Download the draft and connect to the survey at Thank you for contributing your opinion on the DRAFT.
  • Lynn Tuttle, Director Arts Education at the Arizona Department of Education, will be traveling to Maine to share information on the NCAS. This is a unique opportunity for Maine Arts Education.
  • The statewide conference Arts Education: Leading the Way will be held on Thursday, October 24 at UMaine, Collins Center for the Arts. It is not to late to register. The over 30 workshops topics are just what arts teachers are looking for. How do we know? Because the workshops are being presented by your colleagues from across Maine. Who knows better than your colleagues about your needs? It is not too late to register. Please (quick) go to for all the details.

I hope to learn that Maine’s contribution to the NCAS feedback has been plentiful and to see you at this Arts Education: Leading the Way conference! And, if you see me, please do tell me your “wood” stories!


Arts Education Conference Workshops

October 3, 2013

October 24, 2013 – Arts Education: Leading the Way Conference

Each week the Maine Arts Education blog will have information on the upcoming conference. Yesterday’s blog post called How Do I Register for the Conference? provided step-by-step instructions on how to register for the biennial statewide arts education conference. Below are the workshop topics and the time slots that they are being offered at the conference, ARTS EDUCATION: LEADING THE WAY on Thursday, October 24 at UMaine, Collins Center for the Arts. If you’d like to see a description of each workshop and learn (and see) who is presenting the workshop please click

These 35 workshops are being presented by YOUR colleagues from throughout Maine. You will be able to attend three workshops.  The Maine Arts Assessment Initiative’s teacher leaders will be providing the following  workshops:

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To register please click here

The cost to attend the conference is $80 which includes lunch. PLEASE NOTE: PO’s will not be accepted this year. For more information please go to


Arts Education: Leading the Way Conference

August 20, 2013

October 24, 2013, UMaine, Orono, Collins Center for the Performing Arts

After last weeks “dry-run” for the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative Teacher Leaders to present their workshops for each other and an invited group of “critical friends” at USM, I got to thinking about how fortunate we are in Maine. Not only are Arts educators willing to share their teaching practices but they are sharing formally at the statewide conference Arts Education: Leading the Way.


Teacher leaders and critical friends at USM for dry-run of workshops that will be included in the statewide Arts Education: Leading the Way conference being held October 24, 2013, UMaine

I am excited that the conference will be held on the UMaine campus, Orono, Collins Center for the Performing Arts. Our last conferences were very exciting. In 2007 it was held at the Samoset in Rockport, 2009 at Point Lookout in Northport, 2011 at USM, Portland campus, and this year we travel a little farther north to the University’s flagship campus. Each year the workshop offerings have become more varied and go deeper into teaching and learning. You can read the topics and short descriptions of the 35 workshops being offered by downloading the .pdf of the workshops at You can even see photos of the workshop presenters.

In addition to the 35 workshops being offered during three sessions the Opening Session will include performances by the UMaine Symphonic band, a welcome from the Dean of Arts and Sciences, Jeff Hecker, and an informative presentation by Lynn Tuttle, the Director of Arts Education at the Arizona Department of Education. Lynn has been leading the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards and will provide a history of the national standards development. Read more about Lynn and her presentation at this link As many of you know the draft of the PreK-grade 8 standards was released in June for feedback. The draft of the high school standards are scheduled for release in September so we are really fortunate to have Lynn join us to share information as well as answer questions. We are fortunate to have the University Singers perform during the afternoon closing session.

The conference registration is located at . Cost for the conference which includes lunch is $75.00 until September 15 when it goes up to $80.00. (Please note: school purchase orders will not be accepted this year). In addition conference attendees receive 6 contact hours at no extra cost.

On Friday, October 25 and Saturday, October 26 the Maine International Conference on the Arts will take place in the same location. The conference will offer keynotes, showcasing artists and over 25 workshop sessions, including workshops at the new U Maine Innovative Media Research and Commercialization Center. You can read about both conferences at

To register for each conference please go to There are scholarships available and you will find information and details on the registration page.

I suggest that you take a few minutes and check out the information from page to page on the Maine Arts Commission site where all the details are included. I hope to see you there!

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