Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

h1

Another Arts Teacher’s Story: Hilary Martin

March 21, 2017

MALI Teacher Leaders Series

This is the fourth blog post of the Phase 6 Maine Arts Leadership Initiative (MALI) Teacher Leader stories. This series includes a set of questions so you can learn a little bit about the work each Maine visual or performing arts teacher or artist is doing.  CLICK HERE  for more information on MALI. CLICK HERE  for more information on the 81 Teacher Leaders plus 4 Teaching Artist Leaders.  CLICK HERE  for Arts education resources. CLICK HERE  for the MALI Resource Bank. Search in the “search archives” box on the bottom right side of this post for past teacher leader stories. There have been 74 posted to date. Thank you Hillary for sharing your story!

Hilary Martin is currently working as a grades K-8 ed. tech. at the Vassalboro Community School in AOS 92. Before this year, beginning in 2013, she worked as the K-12 theatre teacher at the Vinalhaven School, where she taught K-5 drama, high school public speaking, and middle and high school electives in acting, directing, playwriting, and technical theatre and design. While at Vinalhaven Hilary also directed after-school productions.

What do you like best about being an arts educator?

Having the opportunity to help students be creators, and giving students who might not be highly successful in other classes a place where they can shine.

What do you believe are three keys to ANY successful visual and performing arts education?

Community support, investment from administrators and colleagues, and a passionate teacher.

How have you found assessment to be helpful to you in your classroom?

Assessment allows me to get a sense of what students have and haven’t mastered, so I know what curriculum areas to spend extra time on, and it allows me to give students useful, constructive feedback on their work.

What have been the benefits in becoming involved in the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative?

Being an arts educator can often feel very isolated–a lot of time you’re the only one in the building in your subject area, and being a theatre teacher even more so, as there aren’t that many of us in the state! Being involved with MALI has been a wonderful opportunity to network and share resources with other theatre teachers.

What are you most proud of in your career?

While at Vinalhaven, I began taking students to the Maine Drama Festival. Our first year attending we placed second at the regional competition, and the program has been successful enough to continue under the new Vinalhaven theatre teacher. I’m very proud of how I was able to expand the already very strong theatre program at Vinalhaven!

What gets in the way of being a better teacher or doing a better job as a teacher?

Time, or the lack of it! With all of the responsibilities teachers have there is very little time for professional development, collaborating with colleagues, or even individual curriculum planning–all things that are crucial to being an effective educator.

What have you accomplished through hard work and determination that might otherwise appear at first glance to be due to luck” or circumstances?

While on Vinalhaven, I had the opportunity to become a literacy interventionist, in addition to my work as the theatre teacher. This gave me a great opportunity to improve my skills as a teacher and get to know my students in a new way. While to some extent that opportunity was a result of being in the right place at the right time, it was also a result of my own hard work and commitment to continuing my education and training.

Look into your crystal ball: what advice would you give to teachers?

Know your limits, and don’t be afraid to say no to additional commitments. Arts educators tend to love what we do a great deal, and as a result it can be easy to overextend ourselves–I know I’ve found myself in positions where I took on more than I could reasonably handle! Remember to leave yourself space for rest and recovery.

If you were given a $500,000.00 to do with whatever you please, what would it be?

I would create a program to expand the number of in or after school theatre programs for elementary students. For many students, their first opportunity to participate in theatre comes in middle or high school, but elementary students can benefit just as much from being involved in theatre.

Imagine you are 94 years old. You’re looking back. Do you have any regrets?

It’s hard to say, but I hope that by the time I reach 94 I’ll have the perspective to look back on all the moments of my life as valuable learning experiences!

h1

Another Arts Teacher’s Story: Jason Bannister

February 28, 2017

MALI Teacher Leader Series

mali_v1_color_100ppiThis is the first blog post of the Phase 6 Maine Arts Leadership Initiative (MALI) Teacher Leader stories. This series includes a set of questions so you can learn a little bit about the work each Maine visual or performing arts teacher or artist is doing.  CLICK HERE  for more information on MALI. CLICK HERE  for more information on the 81 Teacher Leaders plus 4 Teaching Artist Leaders.  CLICK HERE  for Arts education resources. CLICK HERE  for the MALI Resource Bank. Search in the “search archives” box on the bottom right side of this post for past teacher leader stories. There have been 72 posted to date. Thank you Jason for sharing your story!

screen-shot-2017-02-26-at-10-11-23-pmJason Bannister presently teaches Theater to grade  7 and 8 students at the Troy Howard Middle School, RSU 71, Belfast. He has taught for 14 years, all in Belfast – 5 years at 4th grade, 3 years middle school ELA, 6 years middle school theater. Jason teaches 250 kids each year, one trimester of performing arts (theater primarily) each year for two years. He also directs the drama club productions and created the Maine Student Acting Competition.

 

What do you like best about being a theater educator?

I have the opportunity to teach something I love to kids, to expose them to theater. The best thing is seeing a student develop an interest in theater from taking the class, and maybe joining the next production onstage.

What do you believe are three keys to ANY successful visual and performing arts education?

There needs to be support from your staff and administration. You shouldn’t have to sell the importance of theater arts education to them. There needs to be a proper space to rehearse, perform and store costumes, sets and props. And the class needs to be required, but with the understanding that not everyone is ‘into it’ – so you need to find interesting ways to teach kids about theater where they aren’t worried they’ll have to get up in front of the class.

How have you found assessment to be helpful to you in your classroom?

I have used many different forms of formative and summative assessment in my performing arts classes. Some are helpful, but sometimes the process is more valuable than the product.

What have been the benefits in becoming involved in the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative?

I was given a chance to focus on a particular unit of study I was creating for my classes. I bounced ideas off other theater teachers. I don’t get this chance very often as the only theater teacher in RSU 71.

What are you most proud of in your career?

When I see a former student go on to college and major in theater. Especially when I remember them being shy or not into theater before taking my class or being in a play/musical I directed.

What gets in the way of being a better teacher or doing a better job as a teacher?

I see some teachers using old units over and over. I am always re-inventing units or coming up with new projects. I try to keep what works well and get rid of what doesn’t. When I started my performing arts class years ago lots of kids didn’t like it. This year most kids love it. If I didn’t make changes to what and how I teach I wouldn’t be effective.

What have you accomplished through hard work and determination that might otherwise appear at first glance to be due to “luck” or circumstances?

I guess being a performing arts teacher in a middle school where the class is mandatory for kids to take. I worked hard to get this class created. There just aren’t lots of programs in Maine like what I’ve created. I am honored to have my job, but it’s been (and continues to be) a long road.

Look into your crystal ball: what advice would you give to teachers?

Fight the mindset some people have about theater arts education – it IS NOT an extra fluff type of subject. You can’t just say ‘oh, well the kids have drama club after school’ – that isn’t the same. Theater arts education is so important in so many ways to so many different kids. Don’t settle – work your hardest to get an equal footing with the ‘core subjects’.

If you were given a $500,000.00 to do with whatever you please, what would it be?

That’s simple – I would put it towards building a proper theater to perform in. Enough of these cafetoriums. It’s ridiculous that there isn’t a dedicated performance space in my school district.

Imagine you are 94 years old. You’re looking back. Do you have any regrets?

I have regrets everyday – how I could have taught that better, worked harder to connect with a student, not said something that hurt someone’s feelings. I guess I hope when I’m that old I won’t regret the time I’ve spent teaching theater and the time I’ve missed with my own children.

THE MAINE ARTS LEADERSHIP INITIATIVE

 Committed to the development of Teacher Leaders to ensure deep understanding and meaningful implementation of high quality teaching, learning and assessment in the Arts for all students.

If you are interested in becoming a teacher leader please email Argy Nestor at argy.nestor@maine.gov.

h1

Greely High School

October 12, 2016

Greely Madrigal singers

Last Friday at the Maine International Conference on the Arts the Greely High School Madrigal singers wowed the conference participants with their variety of repertoire during their pop-up performance. It is difficult to imagine their amazing voices, under the direction of Sarah Bailey, so you can view them performing.  I was able to capture this number on my digital camera and post it to the Maine ARTSEducation youtube channel. You can take a look and listen by CLICKING.

h1

Southern Maine Partnership

April 29, 2016

Learning opportunity at USM – two day conference

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 6.17.34 AM

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 6.18.04 AM

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 6.18.16 AM

h1

Ideas Into Action

October 4, 2015

Teach to Lead does it again

Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 8.02.02 PMIn August I wrote about a trip to Washington, D.C. that a team of 5 from the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative (MALI) took. In fact, it was the trip when the name of the initiative switched from the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative to MALI. We spent time at the Teach to Lead Summit and it was an amazing opportunity for Maine.

The next Teach to Lead Summit was held last week in Tacoma, Washington. It was the fifth summit held in the country where teachers exchanged ideas to improve their schools and discussed plans to put those ideas into action. Over the past year-and-a-half, more than 560 ideas for expanding teacher leadership have been submitted from all over the country, and it’s only just the beginning of the effort to empower teachers to lead the improvement of their schools, says Secretary Duncan. Stay tuned to teachtolead.org to participate in the next summit.

Those who attended the Summit in Tacoma are boldly going back to schools, districts, and states to put their ideas into action.

Watch the Teach to Lead website for the next opportunity to apply for the Summit.

h1

Great Leaders

June 23, 2014

TED talk Simon Sinek

This is an interesting TED talk that I am certain that some of you will find interesting. Simon Sinek talks about leadership and how leaders inspire cooperation, trust and change. Hopefully you will think about who you work with that perhaps does one or more of these and what your place is in your school, district, and/or state level in arts education.

 

 

h1

March Webinar Overview

March 28, 2014

Facilitated by Catherine and Rob

This was written by York High School music educator and Maine Arts Assessment Initiative leadership team member Rob Westerberg as a follow-up to the webinar held on March 5.

RobCatherineStatewide confOct11On Wednesday March 5th, Catherine Ring and I facilitated the first of four MAAI sponsored Webinars for 2014. This one was on “Outreach and Arts Education Leadership”. We were joined by guests Shannon Campell, visual arts educator from Ellsworth High School, Pam Kinsey, music educator for the Easton schools, and by Argy Nestor, Director of Arts Education from the Maine Arts Commission. After tying up a few technology blips, we ended up having a great fifty minute dialogue around the primary topics of the day:

  • What is “outreach” as it pertains to the arts?
  • What does “leadership” in the arts look like?
  • How has the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative worked to develop both outreach and leadership?
  • Why are outreach and leadership essential?
  • Implications and next steps for Maine’s Arts educators

Takeaways were many, but the essence of the broad message is that we have to be proactive, not reactive as we move forward in Arts Education in Maine, and many ideas, strategies and approaches are at our fingertips for doing so. Along those lines, we have put together a pair of meeting plans that you can implement with your colleagues during professional development days in your own schools and districts. Be sure to utilize these if you are looking for professional development ideas or an alternate agenda item for your own district’s Inservice Day; bring your colleagues together and use the webinar archive and the meeting plan to help lead the discussion.

To access the webinar archive: http://mainearts.maine.gov/Pages/Education/MAAI-Webinars
To access the meeting plan for this session:

The next Webinar will take place on Tuesday, April 8th from 3:30 to 4:30 as Catherine and I dig deeper into “Visual and Performing Arts and the Common Core”. More details and instructions on how to log in will be made available shortly. Please be sure to join us if you can for a topic that certainly impacts us all.

%d bloggers like this: