Posts Tagged ‘Carol Trimble’

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Argy’s Journey Continues

June 4, 2019

Walking down memory lane

What a joy it has been during the last few weeks to reflect at the 43 years of my educational pathway. I am fortunate to have selected a career that has provided learning experiences that have expanded my thinking and understanding of how individual learners learn and how we are part of a world of learning connections. I have met and worked (and played) with amazing educators from Maine and around the world.

NEXT STEPS

So, where am I headed next? I have many ideas of what I want to do but I’m going to start by building on the natural next steps.

  • I am working towards creating a fund for Maine arts educators and teaching artists to travel and learn. I’ve had amazing opportunities to travel and every one of them has influenced my creative thinking and doing. I want to support educators who have dreams to travel and learn. I know that when a person returns from traveling that it impacts the learning environment which has the potential to plant seeds and open doors for students. I’m working on the idea with big thinkers and funders. Once I work out the details I will ask you to contribute to the fund. If everyone gives a little we can build the fund more quickly.
  • I will be serving as the director of the middle school at Sweetland School, an arts integrated school in Hope. Lindsay Pinchbeck started the Reggio Emilia inspired school five years ago at the Sweet Tree Arts Center. I have served as an advisor to the school and am excited about the possibilities for the students entering middle school. I will support the teaching team and do some arts integrated teaching as well.
  • In 2016 Lindsay and I traveled to Mpamila Village in Malawi to provide teacher workshops on arts integration. Of course, I gained more than I offered and for the last 3 years continued to support the teachers with 8 other educators providing workshops. My work will go on with Go! Malawi, an organization in Maine that was started by a former student. In July 2020 we will guide the Mpamila teachers to create their own workshops to facilitate at a country wide conference.
  • Malawi led to the innovative work of HundrED and I will continue to share innovative work of the organization. I plan to return to Helsinki this fall for the summit and am especially excited about their Youth Ambassador program.

I will continue to blog through the summer on this blog and communicate with the Maine arts education list-serv about the progress of my work. Please communicate with me at meartsed@gmail.com or through the Maine Arts Education blog below.

WHERE I’VE BEEN 

Like anyone in education we know the paychecks aren’t huge but my life has been rich with opportunities. From the ‘ah-ha’ moments of an individual student’s accomplishment to the excitement of a teacher connecting with other educators and everything in between. When I was teaching every day one thing became clear – hanging out in a middle school art classroom was a continuous learning opportunity and I loved it. My students and colleagues taught me and helped grow my skills and passions as a human being. I received so much than I gave. Being part of an interdisciplinary teaching team where visual art was valued by others as much as I valued it was amazing! When I was recognized in 1995 as the Maine Teacher of the Year I realized how fortunate I was to be honored for such humbling work.

When I left my art room after 30 years it wasn’t easy, teaching was what I knew and loved. But the challenge helped me see more clearly that my mission as an educator was taking a turn. My own son said to me: “Mom, your classroom is just going to get a little larger.” And he was ‘spot on’ (as Rob Westerberg says) about that. Once I fully committed to the work at the state I realized that my “teacher lens” was to guide me. I knew what I needed and wanted as a teacher so I honored that and moved forward collaborating with others to make that happen. Visiting hundreds of arts classrooms in schools across the state was an incredible learning opportunity. The visits led to the 1200 member list-serv and daily communication on this blog.

I AM GRATEFUL

Along the way others continued to collaborate and provide support. I am soooo grateful for the many connections, some of which I mention below.

Carol Trimble

Carol Trimble who was the executive director of Maine Alliance for Arts Education (MAAE) was supportive from day one when I arrived at DOE. Together we brought back the state wide arts education conference and I helped with the first state wide arts education census and other MAAE projects. Carol was and continues to be an incredible mentor with a clear mind who can articulate ideas like no one I know.

Many of you remember David Patterson who sadly passed away from cancer in July 2014 at the age of 50. His wisdom and encouragement taught me to believe in the power of communication to form the community. He pushed, questioned, taught and encouraged me every step of the way. This blog wouldn’t be if it wasn’t for him.

Anne Kofler was the elementary art teacher who taught ‘downstairs’ while I taught middle school ‘upstairs’. She inspired me to go the extra mile and made me a better person in so many ways. She continued to support me, after I left the classroom, to take on the ‘big challenges’ and ‘lean in’. All the while herself, taking on cancer, which eventually took her away in May 2016. Her love for using her travels to inspire her students continues to impact me.

Catherine, myself, Rob

Catherine Ring and Rob Westerberg took a chance when I invited them to travel to NH in the summer of 2010 for the New England Institute on Assessment. I am so grateful that they did – I continue to learn from both of them! Together we created the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) by listening to the needs of the field, reviewing the research, brainstorming and planning. The first MAAI leadership team represented PreK-higher education and helped launch the idea without funding in place. There were tears in my eyes when I heard Jeff Beaudry say “we can sleep on the floor and eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches if we have to, there’s no turning back now.” And, launch we did with 18 amazing teacher leaders at Maine College of Art for the 4-day summer institute. At the end of the institute the teacher leaders made it clear that we weren’t moving into Phase 2 without a place for them.

Phase I Teacher Leaders

Since that first summer, the initiative has grown into a strong leadership program, influencing and inspiring, and the shift in assessment practices around the state took hold. When we traveled to Washington, D.C. for the Teach to Lead summit in August 2015 MAAI shifted to the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative (MALI). Teachers with high expectations for themselves and a passion for learning – teaching other teachers has been the foundation of the success. Educators willing to share their ideas, use research, build on their knowledge, and support the network has worked well for Maine. Title II funds helped to support the summer institutes, critical friend days, mega conferences, winter retreats, stipends for participants, and statewide conferences over the next several years. The partnerships and associations with the Maine visual and performing arts organizations and institutions has been an enormous part – too many to name all of them. Thank you all!

In 2013 i moved to the Maine Arts Commission and the work (and play) of MALI expanded to include teaching artists and community arts organizations. They have provided a broader view of arts education. We’ve all been enriched by their participation in MALI. Linking arms with the greater community of arts and arts education is another way to support learners of all ages in their educational paths. I am especially grateful to the 108 teacher leaders and teaching artist leaders who continue to do amazing work in arts education and as artists!

There are so many more individuals and organizations to thank but this blog post could go on for pages. The people I mentioned are ‘giants’ and every day I stand on their shoulders and fortunately continue to learn from them!

BEYOND MAINE

Throughout the 13 years at the state I’ve had many opportunities to connect with and learn from others outside of Maine. Presentations and workshops at regional and national conferences about MALI, serving in leadership roles with the State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education and the State Arts Agency Arts Education Directors, and serving on the educational council of the Americans for the Arts have provided me ongoing chances to learn from others.

Mpamila teachers in Malawi

My work in Malawi has been amazing. I originally emailed a former student about her work with Go! Malawi and asked if she could use my skill set. From there the idea developed into creating arts integration workshops. I am forever grateful to Lindsay Pinchbeck who agreed to travel to Malawi in 2016. The collaboration that we’ve formed has influenced all parts of my life. She has definitely made me a better teacher, artist, and person. Spending 10 days providing arts integration workshops for the teachers in Mpamila Village opened my eyes to so much about the world. For the last 3 years we continue to support the teacher workshops and have had 8 educators use their expertise in Malawi. In addition we’ve sewn hundreds of dresses and pants for the children in Mpamila School. This work has taken place with friends, family, and colleagues from all over Maine and in other states across the country. I am so grateful to the many who continue to contribute by sewing and contributing to purchase the materials needed.

Malawi led to HundrED when our Malawi project was selected and Lindsay and I were named Ambassadors for the program. We traveled to Helsinki, Finland last November for the HundrED summit and met people from all over the world doing AMAZING work. The network is expanding and I encourage all of you to check out their site and consider applying to be an Innovator, deadline June 30.

CONTINUE – STAY IN TOUCH

I hope that our paths will continue to cross since my work in arts education will continue. Please feel free to reach out using my gmail address at meartsed@gmail.com. I will be blogging throughout the summer and perhaps beyond. Your work in arts education is critical to continue to make the world a better place. Thank you!

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Thank you Jeff Beaudry

March 29, 2013

YAY for Jeff

Today, March 28, 2013, the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) recognizes Dr. Jeffrey Beaudry for his contributions to arts education in Maine. At the Mega-regional workshop held at Ellsworth High School, Jeff was presented with the Carol Trimble Award for Exemplary Service to Arts Education for his commitment, collaborative spirit, and contributions to the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative. During the last two years Jeff has served on the Leadership Team of the MAAI providing guidance and a wealth of knowledge and expertise. The MAAI has benefited from Jeff’s background in assessment and teaching at the University of Southern Maine coupled with his passion for the arts. Jeff did not hesitate when asked to serve and his contributions are greatly appreciated. He has helped track the feedback which provides data to support the work of the 38 teacher leaders and 5 leadership team members.

Carol Trimble was the Executive Director of the Maine Alliance for Arts Education for 10 years before retiring in December 2011. She worked tirelessly and had an enormous positive impact on arts education in Maine. Two Carol Trimble awards have been presented in the past. In 2011 to Catherine Ring and Rob Westerberg.

Jeff was thanked before an audience of 80 arts educators and received a plaque and a golden apple! The MAAI looks forward to many more years of collaborating with Jeff!

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Early Music Improves Hearing

October 11, 2012

Another longtime benefit to music

Carol Trimble

In my family we’ve been talking a lot lately about the topic of hearing because my 92 year-old dad has been trying to make the decision about whether or not it’s worth the investment to him to get new, upgraded hearing aids. (He said, “If I spend all that money, I sure am going to be mad if I die.”)  We’ve talked especially about the real possibility that, even with new hearing aids, he may still have great difficulty hearing in situations like restaurants where there’s a lot of background noise in addition to (and jumbled in with) the conversation around the table.  So I was fascinated to read the recent New York Times article “Early Music Lessons Have Longtime Benefits” by Perri Klass, M.D., showing that yet another benefit of early music education is to improve hearing in exactly that kind of situation.

Klass reports that, “In a study of those who do keep playing, published this summer, researchers found that as musicians age, they experience the same decline in peripheral hearing, the functioning of the nerves in their ears, as nonmusicians. But older musicians preserve the brain functions, the central auditory processing skills that can help you understand speech against the background of a noisy environment.

‘We often refer to the ‘cocktail party’ problem — or imagine going to a restaurant where a lot of people are talking,” said Dr. Claude Alain, assistant director of the Rotman Research Institute in Toronto and one of the authors of the study. “The older adults who are musically trained perform better on speech in noise tests — it involves the brain rather than the peripheral hearing system.’

It encourages me to know that the Maine students who are currently in strong early music education programs may not have to struggle with the kind of hearing problem that has been so difficult for my dad, who did not have the opportunity to benefit from such programs when he was a child.

But, of course, that’s not the only thing that encourages me about Maine students who are participating in strong music education!  As Alexandra Perbery-Clark, a doctoral candidate researching these issues, is quoted as saying in the article:

“We want music to be recognized for what it can be in a person’s life, not necessarily, ‘Oh, we want you to have better cognitive skills, so we’re going to put you in music,’ ” Ms. Parbery-Clark said. “Music is great, music is fantastic, music is social — let them enjoy it for what it really is.”

It’s yet another reminder to us all that an investment in music education is always worth it, in so many ways!

See the full NYT article at

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/10/early-music-lessons-have-longtime-benefits/?src=me&ref=general

Thank you to Carol Trimble for contributing this blog post about this interesting research. Carol is the former executive director of the Maine Alliance for Arts Education and is enjoying teaching as an adjunct instructor for UMA on the Ellsworth and Bangor campuses. She can be reached at carol.trimble@maine.edu.

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Maine Art Education Association Advocate of the Year: Carol Trimble

March 23, 2012

Carol Trimble honored at the Youth Art Month opening, Portland Museum of Art

Carol Trimble, former director of the Maine Alliance for Arts Education, received the Maine Art Education Association (MAEA) advocacy award on March 10th at the opening for the state Youth Art Month opening at the Portland Museum of Art and shared these words. The award was presented by Sandy Brennan, president of the MAEA. Below is the message she shared with students, families, and educators that evening.

I am so pleased  to participate in this celebration of inspiration and imagination and pleased to be here with teachers, administrators, parents, and representatives of organizations, like the Portland Museum of Art, all of whom actively support arts education for these wonderful students.

I’m grateful to be honored by the Maine Art Education Association.

I have such a deep respect for Maine’s arts teachers who are talented, inspired, hard-working and very dedicated.

I have worked closely with MAEA’s former president Trudy Wilson and current president Sandy Brennan on several  successful advocacy campaigns to strengthen arts education for Maine students.

One of the lessons we learned is that parents are the very best advocates. So I’d say to the parents here today: use your power to ensure that your children receive the best education to continue the development of their imaginations. Take a picture at the event today and share it by email or in person with someone on your school board. Let them know what important work our art teachers and their students are doing. And along with that, support your local cultural organizations, especially those, like the Portland Museum of Art, that find effective ways of working with and supporting local schools, teachers, and students.

To the student artists whose work we are celebrating today, I’d like to say: keep using your imagination! We want to see what your imagination comes up with next! Take advantage of all the opportunities you have to develop your imagination and your skills for expressing yourself. Your imagination will help to build your future.

Carol speaking at the opening, Portland Museum of Art

Carol speaking at the opening, Portland Museum of Art

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Youth Art Month Exhibits

March 14, 2012

From Portland to Hallowell to Bangor to Presque Isle

Celebrating Youth Art Month with student art exhibits throughout the state.

Art in the Heart student exhibit, Bangor Mall

Bangor Mall – Art in the Heart student exhibit. Fifty five art teachers have contributed about 800 pieces of student artwork and came together on a recent Sunday to set up the exhibit. The artwork will be in place until March 17th.

Kal Elmore’s description: “Teachers had selected work, matted work, made lists of students, etc. Calls had been made to arrange mall space, panel moving, etc. The day had arrived. It was time for all the parts to come together. And, yes, it was a Sunday morning.

The panels arrived. People started to set up their exhibits. Art teachers greeted old friends with hugs and news. “Oohs” and “aahs” could be heard as art teachers found pieces that are appealing. It truly was glorious to see this exhibit come together!”                                              

The state Youth Art Month exhibit is at the Portland Museum of Art until the end of the month. The exhibit is sponsored by Maine Art Education Association (MAEA). The official opening was on Saturday, March 10th with hundreds of people there to celebrate the 131 students from grades K-12. It was marvelous! Carol Trimble received the Arts Advocacy Award from MAEA and Linda Stanley, MAEAs selection for the Art Teacher of the Year; both had wonderful messages for parents, teachers, and most importantly the students! The show remains until the end of March.

Camilla Jones, "Me on My Worst Day" Tempera, Hall-Dale High School

The Harlow Gallery in Hallowell annual student exhibits are top notch. The high school exhibit was on display during the first part of the month and presently on display is the elementary student art work. The high schools represented each send one student to actually hang the show. They did a marvelous job on the collaboration.

The Northern pARTners – art teachers from Aroostook county, came together last week to hang their student art show at the Aroostook Centre Mall. The art teachers traveled from Houlton, Easton, Caribou, Hodgdon, St. Agatha, Washburn, Mars Hills, Connor, Fort Fairfield, Limestone, Ashland, and of course Presque Isle. The show has 346 pieces from 12 towns. Hundreds of parents and students attended the opening and there were smiles and smiles to go around.

Madasyn Shorey, Grade 3, Zippel Elementary School, Ruth McAtee art teacher

Aroostook county art teachers at the opening of the exhibit.

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Maine Alliance for Arts Education Awards

March 9, 2012

MAINE ALLIANCE FOR ARTS EDUCATION ANNOUNCES 2012 AWARDS

The Maine Alliance for Arts Education is pleased to announce Brian Walsh, Principal at Hermon High School and MaryEllen Schaper, dance educator and teacher at Bonny Eagle Middle and High School as the winners of its annual awards for excellence and service to arts education in Maine.

Walsh was selected as the 2012 Outstanding Administrator Advocate for Arts Education Award, which is given each year to a school or organization administrator who has:
demonstrated outstanding leadership and support of the arts, established exemplary or innovative arts education programs, and promoted the importance of arts in education.

Schaper is the recipient of the 2012 Bill Bonyun Artist/Educator Award which is given each year in honor of Bill Bonyun whose career as a folklorist, storyteller, singer, writer, and educator spanned over half a century. The award is given to someone who has:
made significant contributions to arts education, shown outstanding commitment and dedicated service in arts education, and been an inspiration to students, teachers, and the community.

In nominating Walsh, Cheryl Olson Lorenz said, “In a small community with a high school known as a ‘sports school,’ the support of the principal can make the difference between the arts acting in anonymity or stepping into the spotlight. Brian Walsh has made that kind of difference at Hermon High School through his leadership and support of the arts, arts advocacy, and artistic expression.”

And in her nomination letter for Schaper, Nancy Salmon describes her contributions to dance education by saying, “MaryEllen has provided countless students with their first taste of the joy of dance and movement.”

Schaper and Walsh will receive their awards at a ceremony at the Governor’s Mansion, Blaine House on March 14.

MAAE will also honor Carol Gardien Trimble at the March 14th Blaine House Arts Education Celebration for her dedicated service as its Executive Director. In December 2011, Carol stepped down from her post, having served ten years in this role. During her tenure, Carol guided the organization through a period of program and service expansion and helped the board of directors to make major changes that strengthened MAAE as an important state and national networking and advocacy entity. Under her leadership MAAE created and managed two important programs that offered direct services to Maine students and teachers: Learning in Community – Arts (LINC) in Hancock County) and (with Susan Potters), Building Community Through the Arts (BCTA). To support these programs and other MAAE initiatives, Carol garnered funding through innumerable, federal, state, and foundation grants and corporate supporters. Her administrative skills and gracious presence at the heart of MAAE is greatly missed.

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