Posts Tagged ‘Hampden Academy’

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Wisdom from Maine Arts Educators

September 4, 2018

From the voices of veteran visual and performing arts educators on starting a new school year

Make it a delicious school year!

Whether you’re just starting to teach or you’ve been add it for 50 years or somewhere in between you might be excited out of your mind to start or having the back to school dreams and asking yourself “how the heck am I going to do this?!” or somewhere in between. I asked veteran teachers “what’s your message for new and veteran teachers starting off the school year?” Here they are – WORDS FROM THE WISE and EXPERIENCED! It’s an amazing, amazing (and amazing) collection. THANKS to everyone who contributed!

Collectively below is the wisdom of 654 + 65 years of teaching. These are not in any particular order!

Kate Smith – 20 years
Central School, South Berwick Music Educator, Grades PreK-3
-The first friends you should make are the secretaries and the custodians.
-Drink plenty of water.
-Advocate for transition time between classes (see above).
-Don’t take yourself too seriously.
-Take the time to know your students.
-Find an Arts mentor. (MALI teacher leaders are great!)
-Build/maintain/reach out to a network of teachers for a sense of community and just-in-time support.
-You are going to mess up and wish you could forget it all. Write it down instead. Some day it’ll make you laugh like crazy.

Jake Sturtevant – 13 years
Falmouth High School Music Educator
If there is one thing I have learned to do over the course of the time I have been teaching it is to breathe. The power of breath is so important, and it takes moments to do. I still have those feelings of being overwhelmed and always reaching for the surface of the water beneath the pile of to-dos and hope-to-dos, but now I just try to pause and take a breathe and allow that feeling to settle and often it moves further from me.

Jen Etter – 11 years
York Middle School Music Educator 
My biggest words of advice starting a new school year and something that I am attempting to be mindful of is to not lose sight of the big picture getting bogged down in the details. Education is ever changing and constantly evolving and that can be frustrating at times. Keep focused on the big picture and what you know to be important and always keep students at the center!
Patricia Gordan – 37 years
RSU#14 Windham Raymond, Music Educator
  1. I do not just teach music to children. I teach children through music.
  2. Whenever I get to the point where I begin to think I know what I’m doing, I gain more wisdom and realize I still don’t know what I’m doing. (Keeps me humble.)
  3. When I have a student who is a behavior challenge I try to get to know them better and build a relationship with them outside of class.
  4. Music is a vehicle for expressing all thoughts and emotions. It can be scary to share the sad and angry songs with students. Will I get negative feedback from parents? “Go Tell Aunt Rhody” is a song about death! Should I use it? Of course we should be tactful and careful, but songs in music class should cover all emotions.
  5. A musician must have the heart of a gypsy and the discipline of a soldier. -Beethoven – Some students will be really good at the heart thing and some will be really good at the discipline thing. Stretch them toward the other skill.
  6. Sometimes I have a hard time with the word, “fun.” Music is fun but it is also hard work. I want the students to have more than “fun.” I want to feed their souls. I want them to feel the natural high that comes from producing a fantastic product that is the result of extreme effort.
  7. Especially for elementary teachers – Listen very, very closely. The “music” is in there somewhere. 😊
Iva Damon – 10 years
Leavitt Area High School, Turner, Visual Art Educator
Going into this year I am really resonating with going “back to basics”. We’re here for the kids as they are at the heart of everything we do. Remembering that at the end of each day, I am able to make connections and help achieve steps in their learning. At the same time, this year I am going to work harder at self-care and making sure to take time for myself.
Holly Leighton – 10 years
Mattanawcook Academy, Lincoln, Visual Art Educator
Teaching is not something you learn and then implement for the next 30 years. It is a constant.

The more I learn the more I realize what I don’t know. It is the “what I don’t know” that drives me to learn more. This is how I grow as a person and educator. It is a continuous cycle that inspires a fresh outlook to each new school year. Take workshops and conference opportunities, no matter how long you have been teaching. After 20 years of teaching I am always come back with something I can use to positively affect student learning and engagement.

Cindi Kugell – 29 years
Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, South Paris, Visual Art Educator
Know your “Why”. When we focus on our reason for teaching, and for me it’s because there is nothing cooler than working with kids, it gives our lives purpose, clarity and focus. Working with kids keeps me young, inspired and energized and the gratification that I get from students excitement centered around the arts fuels my passion. I truly feel that teaching is my purpose.
Hope Lord – 28 years
Maranacook Community Middle School, Winthrop, Visual Art Educator
Each school year is a new opportunity for teachers to inspire students, innovate, take risks, collaborate, and celebrate the arts.
Adele Drake – 15 years
Hampden Academy Visual Art Educator
I believe in always being open to learning and receiving help and support from others.
Jane Snider – 26 years
Hancock Grammar School Art Educator
While working outside all day in my gardens to end my summer season I was thinking about all of my gardens, how much they had grown since early spring. I realized how much my teaching is like my gardening! Many plants are now in need of a rest, much like my students and I are in late Spring! I have nurtured the seedlings, plants and bushes throughout the season. I have carefully and thoughtfully helped them showcase their beauty! They’ll be back next year, bigger and brighter! Tomorrow I return to school to nurture my students and showcase the beauty of their learning through their art! I’ve had my rest and restored my spirit, I’m ready to carefully and thoughtfully begin a new season for my students! What do they need to grow and flourish?
Sue Barre – 25 years
Waterville Senior High School Music Educator 
Every year (on the advice of my first principal) I work to learn something about each of my students that has nothing to do with music. This process keeps me on my toes and it is also fun for my students to share their non music passions. I am often uplifted, sometimes saddened, and every so often astounded, to the response I can get from “share three things you did this summer.” My personal goal this year is to greet my students every day at the door……they deserve my attention, whether they are making music or not.
Carmel Collins – 20+ years
Lake Region High School, Naples, Dance Educator
Education today is like working with a living breathing organism. It is forever in a state of flux; morphing, refining, retracting, reshaping……Practice being flexible, adaptable and innovative, learn to let things go and move on, keep light on your feet and don’t get stuck in the mud!
When a parent or guardian becomes angry or frustrated with you, always remember that to them they are fighting for their child, a child they have loved and nurtured since birth. Most of the time they are not angry with you, rather it is the situation they are frustrated with and they are looking for help. Try to stay focused on the issue and don’t make it personal. Practice this and they will become your friend and loyal advocate.
Melanie Crowe –  16 years
Marshwood Middle School, Eliot, Visual Art Educator 
The anticipation of a new school year brings up so many emotions – a changing of the seasons, realizing summer is coming to an end, wiping sand off of my sandals for another season, and the vegetable garden bearing fewer treasures. Although, the excitement of meeting new students and having a chance to bring in a fresh approach and atmosphere to the classroom is a just as much a welcome adventure today as it was entering my first year 17 years ago. I am honored to share the art studio with my middle school artists, the opportunity to engage, challenge, and expand their minds is such a precious experience. The years go by in a blink of the eye, the students faces change, but the desire to light the flame of love for art grows stronger each year. I look forward to working with my colleagues integrating art in as many avenues as I can, bridging the gaps from one content to another so students can see how their learning is not in isolation but interconnected. When students can see how valued they are in the art studio, they begin to believe how valuable their art making experience is. I wish you all a wonderful school year working with the youth of Maine and beyond!
Lindsay Pinchbeck – 12 years
Sweetland School, Hope, Founder, Director, Teacher 
New Beginnings
An opportunity to start again
Still jitters – every year, conditioned since a child
Now knowing
The mix of wonder, unease and transition
Breathe
Fear not the unknown
Anthony Lufkin – 12 years
Friendship Village School, Prescott Memorial School, Union Elementary School, Rivers Alternative Middle School, RSU 40 
Every year is similar, but never the same. Each summer goes by faster and faster, but despite wish for more R&R, I always look forward to the new school year. Art and teaching are similar to me in that they are both all about making connections. In art we attempt to connect with artists of the past to understand their ideas, or we try to connect people with our own ideas and perspectives through creation. Teaching effectively requires making connections with students in a way that they can relate to, understand, and appreciate what we are teaching. If we lose connection, not only does artwork become insignificant to us, so does the purpose for learning. Each school year is an opportunity to make connections in new ways. Being in relatively the same position for several consecutive years gives me the insight for identifying ideas and processes that will relate to specific students. As I prepare to start my 12th year of teaching art, I am looking forward to “reusing” successful lessons, opportunities, and connections I have been able to make thus far.  However, I am also looking forward to experimenting with new ideas to better convey ideas, and give students new ways to understand, and more importantly connect, to what art has to offer.
Andrea Wollstadt – 20 years
John F. Kennedy Memorial School, Biddeford, Music Educator
Allow yourself to get caught up in the excitement. Students involved in music have a passion for music. Their joy and excitement is infectious. These kids are PUMPED UP about playing in an ensemble or participating in a music class. Whatever worries or anxieties you might have about the upcoming school year, make sure you give yourself a chance to catch some of their enthusiasm.
Lisa Marin – 22 years (and this is her last)
Jonesport-Beals High School & Jonesport Elementary Visual Art Educator     
Words of wisdom for the new teacher: I remember that first year being very excited, nervous and worried about doing a good job for my new students, the school system, and my colleagues. I tried to get as much input as I could from my fellow art teacher friends, who were very gracious and generous with advice and materials. I was told to relax, have fun, and realize that it takes a few years to make the program your own. So, cut yourself some slack and you’ll be great. Oh yes, and make friends with the custodial staff. Their help over the years has been invaluable.
Words of wisdom for the veteran teachers: It may sometimes be hard to keep up the energy and enthusiasm in the face of new and increasing demands on your time that have little to do with quality teaching for students. I’ve tried to combat this by finding ways to shake up my lessons. I’m looking for ways to incorporate materials I’ve been unfamiliar with or slightly intimidated by to blow out the cobwebs! It’s been fun and I often find I am helped in my success by my students. We say we are all in this together!
For the soon to be retiring teachers (like me): Plan ahead for what you’d like to do post retirement. That will make the transition so much easier. This sounds like a no brainer but is often overlooked. As much as you might love your job remember, you do the job, you aren’t the job. A new teacher’s approach can be wonderful. We were once new teachers as well with fresh ideas. Enjoy your new year!
Shalimar Chasse – 25 years
Wiscasset Middle High School Visual Art Educator rk Middle School Music Educator 
I like to start right off with hands on- avoiding the loooooonnnnnnnngggggggg and boring “expectations” talk that mostly sounds like “wha wha wha wha, wha wha, wha wha” to students just waking up after a summer of sleeping in until noon. I refer students to my on-line site and a unit binder that holds class expectation information. I send them home with a parent guide to art class and encourage them to review this with their parents and return with a parent note confirming their time together and comments or questions. I encourage students to ask me any question to help them acclimate to our space and class while we are doing our first day art activity. Students know what is expected, some need reminding or clarification or simply to know they might not get away with something they have tested. They come to art to Do art- so I like to meet their expectations hoping they might return the gesture.I love the newness of a brand new school year- with no mistakes in it. I like to think of the upcoming year and classes as the best we will experience yet.
Allie Rimkunas – 14 years en Etter
Great Falls Elementary School, Gorham, Visual Art Educator 
Love your students. The most difficult ones need the most love. As an art teacher, I rarely know the home situations, or past trauma that these little ones might have or are still dealing with. I try to keep that in mind when I know a difficult student is coming into my room. Every day is a new day and a possibility for new positive interactions.
I have been teaching for 14 years, and every August brings a new batch of school anxiety dreams. Never fails. I figure that if I didn’t get them then I am not doing my job and changing it up enough.
Catherine Ring – 65 years
Isle au Haut Visual ArtEducator 
Share your passion for learning with children. It’s contagious!
Jane Kirton – 20 years
Sanford High School Music Educator 
Be Compassionate . . . Be consistent . . . CommunicateBe compassionate – Music is one of the few subjects that connects the heart and the brain. Showing compassion towards my students and my colleagues is who I am. The world is filled with so much pain, we don’t know what our students are going through at home. I take great pride in the fact that from day one I tell my students that my classroom is their home and we are a family.  No bullying is allowed. If there is a drama free atmosphere in the room, our music will sound better!  Show you care, smile (even though you are a nervous wreck). Don’t forget to be kind to yourself.  Take care of you – exercise, drink plenty of water, yoga, anything to relieve stress.

Be consistent – Consistency, in my eyes, is critical in good parenting. Set your classroom code of cooperation on day one and stand by it! Treat everyone the same. Discipline can be challenging for a new teacher. Discipline allows a successful start for the entire class. I always remind myself I can always ease up a bit as we get into the year but hold firm to your rules. Keep up with the paperwork (yes, there are certain things we need to do as part of the job which doesn’t have anything to do with what we teach – just “get it done,” don’t put it off.)

Communication – I always tell my students that I’m not a mind reader. I encourage them to tell me what’s going on. It is also important to communicate with them and their parents – concert schedule, paperwork, etc. Communicating with your colleagues is also important. I recently read a post where a new teacher was critical of older teachers in their district in the ways they were teaching. Not a great way to start!  We’re all in this together. Reach out and communicate.  Communicate with your administration, janitors, secretaries, etc. Ask if you don’t know!!

Rob Westerberg – 32 years
York High SchoolMusic Educator 
It’s not about the product, it’s about the process. Precious few are going to remember your concert or art exhibit or play or dance recital three years from now. But dozens of years from now every single participant will remember their journey with you to create that product, and whether or not you caused them to flourish academically and blossom personally. If you take care of those two things – on a daily basis – the rest will take care of itself. Academic without personal is tedious. Personal without academic is cheating them. Both combined is spot-on and will leave you at the end of the day feeling like it was all worth while. Because it will have been.
Charlie Johnson – 44 years
Mount Desert Island High School Visual Art Educator 
Get to know your learners; it is through positive connections that a teacher can discover that which is not always overt from an individual. We are all unique and we are all special, and if you endeavor to learn about your students in a positive manner, it goes a long way toward developing a teacher/learner relationship that benefits both parties.
I’m just starting my 45th teaching year, and I’m just as excited about my new students and classes as I was my first year, because I haven’t fallen into “the same old thing” trap and have many new pieces to explore with my students!
Barbie Weed – 14 years
Gray-New Gloucester Middle School Visual Art Educator 
I always find that the best way to begin a new school year is to forge connections with students as soon as possible. Whether students are returnees for new to the school, taking a little time to get to know something about them sets a positive tone for the whole year. I’m excited for the new experiences that students will bring to my classroom.
Jean Phillips – 30+ years
Wiscasset Middle High School English and Drama Educator
Life is an occasion; rise to it.
Lisa Ingraham – 12 years
Madison Elementary School Visual Art Educator 
Plan meticulously, but keep your mind open to teachable moments. Some of the best learning experiences in my art room began with a student question, interest, and/or aha! that changed our direction for that day.
I’m looking forward to a great, creative, messy year!
MaryEllen Schaper – Retired in June with 42 years
Dance Educator 
Take your work seriously; don’t take yourself too seriously. The work is VERY important, but you can be replaced.
For new teachers, yes, you want to develop positive relationships with your students, but they are NOT your friends. If you need friends at work, develop friendships with your colleagues.
My former superintendent, used to say, “we are there to teach ALL children. Parents send us their best. They don’t keep “the good ones” home”.
We never know the baggage a student brings to school, so listen and be kind. Help students learn that that baggage may be a reason, but it shouldn’t be used as an excuse by the student, the teacher, or the parent. There’s a difference.
Applicable Lin Manuel Miranda “Hamilton” quotes:
“Why do you assume you’re the smartest in the room?” You might not be. I have learned A LOT from my students.
“I am not throwing away my shot.”  You have amazing opportunity to influence lives now and beyond anything in your wildest dreams, so go in EVERY DAY and give 100%.
“I am looking for a mind at work”. Teach your students to think outside the box, ask questions, and how to find answers, even if they might not be what you had in mind.
“Talk less. Smile more.”  Breathe. listen. You’ll be amazed at what you’ll see and hear.
“I wanna be in the room where it happens”.  You ARE in the room where it happens every day. Savor it. It goes by quicker than you’d think!
Lori Spruce – 10 years
Brewer High School Visual Art Educator 
Contribute to the knowledge and skills that you have not only in your own content area, but also expand out to involve your colleagues content areas as well. By doing so, you help not only yourself,  but also students and teachers can learn and grow in the same way. By getting out of your comfort zone and content area, the relationships that you build are invaluable and help build the confidence needed to model what you learn.
Pam Chernesky – 26 years
Mt. Blue High School, Farmington Visual Art Educator 
Start each school year open and ready to build a new community! Bring your best self and a positive attitude to what you do. Every year there will be new initiatives and demands on your teaching and your time, but the real focus should be meeting your students and sharing the excitement of creating and learning with them. Remember that you have content knowledge, passion, and experiences to share and that your students want to learn from you. Don’t become bogged down by the initiatives, administrative demands, or even the details of lesson plans. Offer challenges and take risks in your classroom! Laugh with your students!  Have fun!
Kris Bisson – 16 wonderful years!
Marshwood Middle School, Director of Choruses 
No matter what type of learners you have in your classroom, every student needs understanding.

When I’m excited about what I’m teaching, my students are excited about what I’m teaching!

Theresa Cerceo – 15 years
Dr. Levesque Elementary School & Wisdom Middle High School, MSAD # 33 Visual Art Educator
Trust your instincts, value your strengths and keep yourself open to learning new things.
Danette Kerrigan – 13 years
Sacopee Valley Middle School Visual Art Educator 
Every year is different, but poses the possibility of new discovery and greatness. Every year is the same – the same bright expectant eyes, sleepy heads, hugs and growth. Starting a new year is never boring, always keeping me on my toes, yet is as exciting as opening a new box of crayons… the possibilities are endless. Fashions change, expectations change, requirements change, students stay the same – still needing reassurance, encouragement, celebration and a champion.
For new and veteran teachers – breathe. Embrace each day and reflect at the end on what went well and be honest about what did not. Remember that everyone has something to offer, even those adults who may try your patience. They too, got up this morning, hoping to do the right thing. Assume good intentions. Always apologize – even to students – especially to students – when you have had a bad day and spoke shortly when you shouldn’t have. Remember that you are making an impact you don’t even know about yet.
Rick Osann – 15 years (retiring this year!)
Bonny Eagle High School Media, Theatre, and Visual Arts Educator 
Be sure to be yourself. Teaching can be really stressful and it’s easy to try to be different to either be the “perfect teacher” or to get your students to “like” you.  The most important thing is to feel comfortable in your own skin.  Students of any age recognize quickly if you’re not being true to your core beliefs. Students will respect you if you just be yourself.
Bill Buzza – 25 years
Edward Little High School Music Educator 

Some words of advice for the beginning of the year:

#1 – Take time to get organized. We get so busy and there are many demands on our time. Using an organizational system that works for you allows you to spend more time teaching.
#2 – (New teachers) Find a mentor and don’t be afraid to ask questions. It’s much more efficient to learn from others than trying to reinvent the wheel.

#3 – Don’t be afraid to say “No” but keep an approachable demeanor. Many times students try to learn / push a teachers limits. We need to be committed to our response and consistent so students know what to expect.

#4 – Build relations with everyone; students, administrators, parents, colleagues, custodians. There will be a time when those connections will pay great dividends.
What’s your advice to new and returning educators? Please email me yours and I will collect them for a future blog post. How will you include and support new teachers in your school/district? Please introduce them to the Maine Arts Education blog – its easy to subscribe (on the right side, half way down). And, invite them to join the community by joining the arts education list-serv by sending me their email address.
Before we get to the “wise words” from Maine, Nancy Flanagan taught K-12 music for 30 years in Michigan. She blogs for Education Week, the TEACHER section called TEACHER in a Strange Land (you may want to follow her on twitter) and on August 6 she wrote a post called Ten Non-Standard ideas About Going Back to SchoolIt’s worth the read (after you read what Maine arts educators have to say)!
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Hampden Academy

May 10, 2017

Spring Jazz Night

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Hampden Academy Music

January 20, 2017

Hampden Academy students ‘Play it Forward”

Ingrid Jensen

Ingrid Jensen

Music educator Pat Michaud from Hampden Academy sent me the latest news from the work going on at Hampden Academy. They are busy preparing for a concert and CD release that will benefit one of their own. Read about the work they are doing by CLICKING HERE.

On January 17-19 Ingrid Jensen will in residency at part of the Jazz Residency Initiative with Hampden Academy Jazz Students. She will also be performing with musicians, Dave Wells on Tenor Sax, Ryan Parker on Piano, Les Harris, Jr on Drums and Greg Loughman on Bass.

Ingrid will be presenting two Master Classes. On Tuesday, January 17th from 4:30 – 6 p.m. – Developing Deeper Listening Skills that will lead to more exciting improv. experiences. On Wednesday, January 18th from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m – Brass Master Class

The Capstone Concert will be on Thursday, January 19 at 7 p.m.

All workshops and performance are to be held in the Hampden Academy Performing Arts Center.

Workshops are free of charge.  Tickets will be available at the door for the concert.

Information on Ingrid Jensen: Ingrid plays trumpet and flugelhorn with all the brilliance and fire of a true virtuoso, following the spirit of the muse as she creates…warm, sensitive, exciting and totally honest…” ~ Marian McPartland
Born in Vancouver and raised in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Ingrid Jensen has been hailed as one of the most gifted trumpeters of her generation. After graduating from Berklee College of Music in 1989, she recorded three highly acclaimed CDs for the ENJA record label, soon becoming one of the most in-demand trumpet players in the global jazz scene. After a teaching stint in Europe in her early twenties (as the youngest professor in the history of the Bruckner Conservatory in Linz, Austria), Ingrid settled in New York City in the mid-1990s where she joined the innovative jazz orchestras of Maria Schneider and Darcy James Argue.
More recently, Ingrid has been performing with the Grammy- winning Terri-Lyne Carrington and her Mosaic Project. Ingrid is a featured soloist on the Christine Jensen Jazz Orchestra’s JUNO award winning album Treelines (2011), and its successor, Habitat (2013). She has performed with a multi-generational cast of jazz legends ranging from Clark Terry to Esperanza Spalding. Ingrid has also performed alongside British R&B artist Corrine Bailey Rae on Saturday Night Live and recorded with Canadian pop icon Sarah McLachlan. In addition to her busy sideman and featured soloist schedule, Ingrid leads her own quintet, quartet and organ trio. Her own bands have garnered glowing reviews and a loyal fan base in Australia, South Africa, most countries in Europe, across Canada, the US, South America (including Brazil, Peru and Chile), Japan and Mexico.
Ingrid is also a dedicated jazz educator. She has taught trumpet at the University of Michigan and Peabody Conservatory, performed and lectured as a guest artist with the Thelonious Monk Institute High School group featuring Herbie Hancock, The Centrum Jazz Workshop, The Dave Brubeck Institute, the Banff Centre Workshop in Jazz & Creative Music, Geri Allen’s All-Female Jazz Residency and the Stanford Jazz Camp, to name a few.
Ingrid won the Carmine Caruso Trumpet Competition in 1991 and has twice served on the judges’ panel. She is regularly invited to trumpet festivals around the world, including a prestigious invitation in 2011 to work with classical trumpet maestro Håkan Hardenberger and the Swedish Wind Orchestra.
Ingrid plays a custom Monette trumpet, built personally by master builder Dave Monette. Her relationship with Dave has inspired numerous performances at the shop in Portland and generated collaborations with fellow Monette artist, Adam Rapa, as well as John Henes, a specialist in the Alexander technique for brass players.
One of Ingrid’s most frequent and closest collaborators is her sister, saxophonist and composer Christine Jensen. In addition to Christine’s Jazz Orchestra, they co-lead the group Nordic Connect with pianist Maggi Olin. Ingrid and Christine recently recorded a new album with their small group venture featuring guitarist Ben Monder and are eagerly anticipating the spring release.
Ingrid’s most recent release, an electric project (Kind of New) with keyboardist Jason Miles, has garnered rave reviews globally and has led to recent collaborations with Joe Lovano and Lionel Loueke.
Other projects Ingrid has been invited to lend her voice to include: David’s Angels (Sweden), Kari Ikonen (Finland), Marianne Trudel (Montreal), Ellen Rowe (USA), Adam Birnbaum (USA), Sharel Cassity (USA), Tobias Meinhart (Germany/US), numerous all- star groups including a recent European tour with Renee Rosnes, Terri-Lyne Carrington, Anat Cohen, Linda Oh and Melissa Aldana.

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Poetry Out Loud State Finals

March 7, 2016

March 15, 3:00 PM, Waterville Opera House

THE MAINE ARTS COMMISSION ANNOUNCES POETRY OUT LOUD STATE FINALS
Maine High School Students Compete in National Poetry Recitation Contest

Augusta, ME—The Maine Arts Commission is presenting the 2016 Maine State Finals for Poetry Out Loud, a National Poetry Recitation Contest, on March 15 at 3 p.m. at the Waterville Opera House. The competition, presented in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, is free and open to the public. Jennifer Rooks, MPBN’s Public Affairs Host, will be the emcee. Doors open to the public at 2:30 p.m. and no tickets are required.

Poetry Out Loud encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance, and competition. Since Poetry Out Loud began, millions of students at more than 7,300 schools nationwide have been involved. This school year, almost 10,000 Maine students have participated in the program, providing them with an opportunity to master public-speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.

“Poetry Out Loud is one of many examples of high-quality, partnership-based programs that the NEA offers to schools and communities across the country,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “By helping students foster creative thinking skills and inspire self-expression, we are laying a foundation for lifelong learning in the arts.”

Poetry Out Loud is organized by the NEA and the Poetry Foundation, and is administered at the state level by the Maine Arts Commission. It began this year in Maine’s high schools where each school selected a champion to compete in a regional competition. From the two regional finals, 10 students were selected to compete in the State Finals. One student will move on from the State Finals to represent Maine at the National Finals in Washington D.C., where students from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico will compete for a total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends for the purchase of poetry books.

Congratulations to the following students who will participate in the Maine State Finals at the Waterville Opera House:
•  Lydia Caron, Bangor High School
•  Morgan Steward, Carrabec High School
•  Shiloh Munsen, Freeport High School
•  Charlotte Benoit, Greely High School
•  Danielle Barrett, Hampden Academy
•  Sylvia Holland, Maine Coast Waldorf School
•  Rose Horowitz, Mt. Ararat High School
•  Owen Sinclair, Rangeley Lakes Regional School
•  Anna Bucklin, Searsport District High School
•  Ben Millspaugh, Waynflete School

For more information, please visit http://mainearts.maine.gov/Pages/Education/POL-Home or contact Argy Nestor, Maine Arts Commission Director of Arts Education at argy.nestor@maine.gov or 207-287-2713.

The Maine Arts Commission shall encourage and stimulate public interest and participation in the cultural heritage and cultural programs of our state; shall expand the state’s cultural resources; and shall encourage and assist freedom of artistic expression for the well being of the arts, to meet the needs and aspirations of persons in all parts of the state.

Southern Region State Finalists left to right: Charlotte Benoit, Greely High School; Rose Horowitz, Mt. Ararat High School; Ben Millspaugh, Waynflete School; Sylvia Holland, Maine Coast Waldorf School; Shilo Munsen, Freeport High School

Southern Region State Finalists left to right: Charlotte Benoit, Greely High School; Rose Horowitz, Mt. Ararat High School; Ben Millspaugh, Waynflete School; Sylvia Holland, Maine Coast Waldorf School; Shilo Munsen, Freeport High School

Northern Region State Finalists left to right: Lydia Caron, Bangor High School; Morgan Steward, Carrabec High School; Danielle Barrett, Hampden Academy; Owen Sinclair, Rangeley Lakes Regional School; Anna Bucklin, Searsport District High School

Northern Region State Finalists left to right: Lydia Caron, Bangor High School; Morgan Steward, Carrabec High School; Danielle Barrett, Hampden Academy; Owen Sinclair, Rangeley Lakes Regional School; Anna Bucklin, Searsport District High School

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POL Today

February 29, 2016

Northern Regional Finals – Hampden Academy

The Poetry Out Loud (POL) Northern Regional Finals will be held today starting at 3:00 PM at Hampden Academy. The Maine Arts Commission (MAC) invites you to attend this exciting event – no cost and open to the public. Nineteen students will be competing for one of 5 spots in the State Finals. The following students have already competed at the school level and will proudly represent them:

  • Lydia Caron – Bangor High School
  • Amanda O’Brien – Calais High School
  • Kara Robak – Camden Hills Regional High School
  • Morgan Steward – Carrabec High School
  • Abigail Corson – Gardiner Area High School
  • Phoebe Zildjian – George Stevens Academy
  • Emily Albert – Hall-Dale High School
  • Danielle Barrett – Hampden Academy
  • Katherine McKee – Kents Hill School
  • Dianna Nicholas – Lee Academy
  • Hannah Orr – Maine Central Institute
  • Antyna Gould – Medomak Valley High School
  • Tara Seymour – Messalonskee High School
  • Emmeline Willey – Monmouth Academy
  • Michaela Dube – Presque Isle High School
  • Owen Sinclair – Rangeley Lakes Regional School
  • Stefanie Johansen – Richmond High School
  • Anna Bucklin – Searsport District High School
  • Lauren Brown – Waterville Senior High School

We are happy to include in today’s program the Hampden Academy R&B Project, under the direction of music teacher Patrick Michaud. They are one of four jazz groups at Hampden Academy. They perform a wide variety of styles ranging from Frank Sinatra to Ray Lamontange. The group was created to give students an opportunity to perform in an ensemble that will allow them to perform in the music industry beyond high school.

Poetry Out Loud is organized nationally by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation and administered at the state level by the MAC. POL encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance, and competition. Since it began, millions of students at more than 7,300 schools nationwide have participated. This great program also gives students an opportunity to master public-speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.

Recently students had the opportunity to work with two award winning Maine poets, Megan Grumbling and Gibson Fay-LeBlanc during an online workshop. It was a outstanding learning session where students had a chance to practice and receive feedback on their recitations.

Online POL workshop

Online POL workshop

The Maine State Finals for POL will be held on March 15, Waterville Opera House, 3 PM TODAY – open to the public, no cost! Jennifer Rooks, Public Affairs Host and Producer at Maine Public Broadcasting Network (MPBN), will serve as the event’s emcee.

For more information about Maine’s POL program, please visit http://mainearts.maine.gov/Pages/Education/POL-Home or contact Argy Nestor, Maine Arts Commission Director of Arts Education at argy.nestor@maine.gov or 207-287-2713.

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Playing it Forward

February 2, 2015

Hampden Academy’s Music Industry Class

Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 8.47.57 PMStudents in Pat Michaud’s music industry class at Hampden Academy have created a CD. The class teaches students how to operate audio, work in a music studio, and produce a CD.

We know that this curriculum is not so unusual, but this learning opportunity turned into something larger. Students decided to plan a concert to perform the music that they wrote and included on the CD they created. The proceeds from the selling of the CD has become a way to help out others. At the concert they sold the CD to raise money for the former workers of the Verso Mill workers in Bucksport.

Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 8.48.53 PMSenior Daniel Rice said: “I think it’s just a great feeling because I get to do what I love and to be able to donate the money it also a great thing.”

And, Mr. Michaud adds, “The nice thing about this is what they’re going to hear mostly tomorrow is all original material. These are all compositions the student have written themselves.”

The students have raised $1000 and there are a few CD’s still available to purchase for $8 by contacting Pat at pmichaud@rsu22.us. And, you can learn more at http://wabi.tv/2015/01/14/talented-young-hampden-musicians-play-it-forward/.

This is not the first time that this type of project has been done at Hampden Academy. You can read about their other projects at the following links.  This is the third collaboration we’ve done. We will sell those for $1 a piece.  Folks can contact me through e-mail me at Hampden Academy pmichaud@rsu22.us

The first time they undertook the project the following was published in the Bangor Daily News
http://bangordailynews.com/2010/12/16/living/hampden-academy-students-get-trained-in-music-industry/?ref=search

An article was published in the Feb. 2011 edition of the Maine Music Educator’s Bulletin. The article is called “Playing it Forward at Hampden Academy” on Pages 26-28 at http://content.yudu.com/Library/A1r1yx/MMEABulletinFebruary/resources/index.htm?referrerUrl=http%3A%2F%2Ffree.yudu.com%2Fitem%2Fdetails%2F288695%2FMMEA-Bulletin-February-2011–Technology-Issue

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In Today’s News

March 16, 2014

Maine Sunday Telegram

“Feeling the Beat” at Hampden Academy with the Maine State High School Instrumental Jazz Festival. Read all about the excitement and see photos at http://www.pressherald.com/news/Battle_of_the_Jazz_Bands_brings_out_friendly_competition_at_statewide_competition_.html.

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