Posts Tagged ‘regional workshops’


Announcing Mega-Regional Workshops

November 12, 2013

Ellsworth High School, UMF, USM, and UMaine

Feedback on the biennial statewide conference Arts Education: Leading the Way that was held at UMaine on October 24th continues to come in. But that is not all that the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) is providing for professional development this school year.

I am soooooooo excited to announce the professional development opportunities that continue to take place by the MAAI teacher leaders. There are 35 sessions scheduled at the 4 locations listed below that the MAAI calls Mega-Regional workshops.

You can click on each site above to get to the details or go to In the AM at each Mega-Regional session teachers will select 2 workshops from a variety (each site offering different workshops). There are two PM sessions that teachers will have a chance to drill down on important arts education topics that are impacting all of us in today’s education environment:

  • The Arts and Proficiency
  • Think Tanks on Technology

The cost to attend a Mega-Regional workshop is $20.00 with 5.5 contact hours provided. Registration is required to attend the all day, 8:15 – 3:15, Mega-Regional workshops.

Please note: Each mega-regional workshop has a different link for registering! The MAAI teacher leaders are anxious to share their workshops with you and look forward to what you bring to the workshops. These are multiple opportunities for the Maine Arts education community to come together to deepen our knowledge!

If you have any questions please email me at I look forward to seeing you at a Mega-Regional workshop.


Phase 3 MAAI summer institute, MECA, June 2013

Also scheduled are 34 Regional workshops taking place in various locations all over the state. You can find the information on these workshops by clicking here.


Prof Dev Opportunities!

January 7, 2013

Register today for the Mega-regionals


First and second phase MAAI teacher leaders and leadership team members

Professional development opportunities are taking place in numerous locations in Maine during the next few months. Workshops are part of the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) and being offered by teacher leaders from the first and second phase of the MAAI. You can read about the regional workshops and the Mega-regional workshops at There are a variety of workshops being offered including sessions being co-facilitated by MLTI technology integrators and MAAI teacher leaders. These teachers have made a huge commitment to the MAAI and are looking forward to sharing their ideas and expertise with you!

You do not need to register for the Regional workshops however, you will need to register for the Mega-regional workshops. All workshops are FREE and contact hours are being provided by the Department. After you read the sessions descriptions you may decide to attend more than one workshop. (Are you allowed to do that? Of course you may!)

All participants need a laptop with the 2012-13 MLTI image. If you do not have one there is a place to designate that when you register. We will lend you one for the workshop. PLEASE register at least one week before the event in order for us to insure that we have a laptop for you to use that day!

Details are posted and access to the registration page can be found at The first Mega-regional workshop is taking place next Monday, January 14 at University of Maine, Farmington. I hope to see you at one of these professional development opportunities designed especially for Maine Arts educators!

More information on the MAAI can be found at


Happy New Year!

January 1, 2013


I have taken some time today to reflect on 2012 and realize how fortunate I am to work with incredible arts educators in Maine and throughout the United States. Educators who are dedicated, passionate, and fully committed to providing an outstanding arts education for every student!

The year has been filled with many successes, some challenges, and sad losses! I wish I had time to go back through all the blog posts that I wrote in 2012 to help me remember all of the successes, challenges, and losses but instead I will provide the highlights.


The biggest success is the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI). The second phase of MAAI officially kicked off in the spring with the identification of 20 teacher leaders. These arts educators joined the 18 teacher leaders from phase one. They participated in a 4-day institute in August at the Maine College of Art (MECA) in Portland where they expanded their knowledge in the areas of assessment, leadership, technology, and creativity. They have created workshops that are being delivered throughout this school year at the regional and mega-regional level. (Registration for the mega-regional workshops is now open – FREE and contact hours are available.) The topics of the sessions are as varied as the individual teacher leaders. I am so grateful for their commitment to the work that is making a difference for arts teachers and in arts classrooms across Maine each day. The impact on students learning is amazing!

And, uniquely the Mega-regional workshops are being co-sponsored with the Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI). At these workshops their will be at least one session that is integrated with an MLTI integrator to provide a first time opportunity for educators!

The MAAI would not be possible without the commitment of the leadership team who have consistently shepherded the work. A GREAT BIG THANK YOU to Catherine Ring, Rob Westerberg, Jeff Beaudry, Bronwyn Sale, Pam Kinsey, and Matt Doiron. Their willingness to lead has made a difference! Close to 1000 arts educators have taken advantage of the professional development opportunities during the last year and a half.

The MAAI is aligned with the Maine Department of Education’s Strategic Plan: Education Evolving: Maine’s Plan for Putting Learners First.

In July Catherine and I flew to Denver for a national conference on arts assessment held at the Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design. I was proud to let others know of the grassroots efforts that Maine arts educators are involved with.

Art educator Chris Milliken, on sabbatical from Wells schools, has been following and doing research on the MAAI during this past year. He will join art teacher Lisa Marin and present a session on their findings at the Mega-regional workshop at Ellsworth High School on March 29, 2013.

Literacy is a statewide focus with the Literacy for ME being launched this fall and arts education has stepped up to become an integral part of the cross content literacy connections. Arts educators Jen Nash, Suzanne Goulet, and Lisa Gilman have been facilitating literacy webinars. Suzanne is also co-facilitating face to face sessions.

We have had 4 wonderful art exhibits at the Maine Department of Education during this past year from Maranacook Community Schools, Bangor Elementary and Middle Schools, Lake Region High School, and Messalonskee High School. Along with the exhibits we had receptions at the Blaine House with music and dance performances from each school/district. Participating and collaborating are First Lady Ann LePage, the Maine State Board of Education, and the Commissioner of Education, Steve Bowen.

First Lady Ann LePage partnered with the Barbara Bush Foundation to create a new baby journal to present to parents at hospitals across Maine when their babies are born. We did a call for K-8 artwork and 867 young artists submitted work. Thirty two pieces were selected to be published in the book which will be completed in June 2014.

The Maine arts education list-serv has grown to 1200 and the meartsed blog is growing as a source of information, not only for arts educators but for all educators. If you are not on the list-serv but would like to be, please email me at On December 5, 2013 the blog set a record high day of 976 visitors. And a record high week happened during that same time of 2508 visitors. Thank you for taking the time to visit and informing others about what is available on the Maine arts education blog.


  • Common Core standards for ELA and Math were released this year and teachers are being asked to incorporate them into their curricula.
  • We are waiting patiently for the next iteration of the national arts standards to be released in March March 2013.
  • Arts education in Maine is underserved. As the economy continues to be a challenge so is providing adequate arts education programs and teachers.
  • Determining how to provide quality arts education to be ready for the “proficiency based graduation requirement” slated for the graduating class of 2018.
  • What will determine “teacher effectiveness” for arts educators (the non-tested content)?


In March music teacher Beth Polletto died in a car accident driving to school. Beth taught at Gray New Gloucester and Georgetown Central School. In May art teacher Jackie McTigue died in a car accident on her way to school. Jackie taught at Glenburn Elementary School. Both teachers were amazing arts educators and have left a huge hole. My friend and colleague 2nd grade teacher and Maine’s 2010 Teacher of the Year Kevin Grover died on Thanksgiving day after returning from a run. He is greatly missed by family, friends, and colleagues.

Looking forward

photoBeing forever optimistic, I know that 2013 will be filled with many more successes and that the challenges will be small mountains for us to climb. I invite you to collaborate with your colleagues to face the challenges and enjoy the successes. I hope you will continue to use the meartsed blog for resources and to access information. Many of you have heard me say “none of us is as smart as all of us”. Please continue to share information that I can pass on to others through the blog. I appreciate it!

I am confident that 2013 will be filled with opportunities for arts education to move forward. For example part of phase 2 of the MAAI is videotaping arts classrooms to respond to your request “what does a standards based arts education classroom look like?” So, Debi Lynne Baker (newly retired art teacher) will be visiting arts classrooms in the next few months and creating 4 short videos with examples. This is just one example of resources being developed for arts teachers.

I enjoy the challenges that my work at the Maine Department of Education provides for me. I especially love the opportunity to interact with you, the readers of the meartsed blog. So please take a moment when possible and drop me an email at or make a comment at the bottom of a blog post. You can subscribe to the blog by clicking on “Sign me up!” located on the right side of the front page of the blog.

I hope your year is filled with love and laughter and that you continue to provide outstanding opportunities for your students in arts education! Best Wishes for a wonderful 2013 and THANKS so much for all the good that you do in education!

Only one photo and one quote included in today’s post. Hopefully the photo will put a smile on your face and the quote will provide you with some “food for thought” as we dive into 2013!

The purpose of arts education is not to produce more artists, though that is a byproduct. The real purpose of arts education is to create complete human beings capable of leading successful and productive lives in a free society. – Dana Gioia, Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts


MAAI Regional Workshops

October 30, 2012

Underway throughout Maine

We are fortunate to have nineteen phase 2 arts education teacher leaders from the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative (MAAI) who have created workshops and started delivering them throughout Maine. The topics vary greatly and I am sure there is something for everyone!

You can find the schedule posted on the arts assessment page at the Maine Department of Education (MDOE) and below. You will notice that some of the details are missing below but as they become determined will be added to the MDOE page. The locations are spread out through the state to make it possible for you to attend a session in your region.

Along with the regional workshop, Mega-regional workshops are being planned as well. They will be posted in the near future. These workshops will be all day opportunities and we have teamed up with MLTI for Mega-regional workshops. If you have questions please be sure and email me at

MAAI: Impossible – What exactly is the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative and what direction are we headed in Maine Arts Education? November 2, 2012, 11:00am, Dexter Ridgeview School, District V Middle School Honors Festival Andria Chase, Instrumental, general music, grades 4,5, Corinth, RSU #64 and Sarah Williams, band/chorus grade, general music, grades 2-4, Glenburn Elementary School, RSU 26
Unpack it! Unwrap it! – Breaking down the Standards to Inform Instruction and Learning Information and techniques in breaking down the standards with students to provide a successful learning experience. November 2, 2012, 2:00pm to 3:00pm, Hancock Grammar Schoo Janie Snider, visual arts, grades K-8, Hancock Grammar & Laomoine Consolidated Schools
Getting Started: Incorporating Meaningful Assessment Within the Large Ensemble – A look at incorporating standards based learning and assessment within the large ensemble without the use of technology. District III High School Honors Festival & District III Junior High Honors Festival Drew Albert, Music director, Maranacook Community High School, RSU 38 and Ashley Smith, Choral Director, Brunswick High School, Brunswick School Department
There is no I in ART; Working Together to Promote Quality Art Education for all Learners – Presentation addressed to parents. The Maine Learning Results and assessment terminology will be explained in user-friendly terms. A hands-on component is also included, as the parents create a piece of art. The presentation can be tailored to suit the needs of arts educators, classroom teachers, and/or administrators. November 5, 2012, MSAD#32 Superintendent and Board of Directors
meeting, November 6, 2012 Ashland PTO meeting
Susan Beaulier, Visual Art, K-12 MSAD #32, Ashland
Assessment: This is NOT a Drive By (Assessment is MEANT for ME-student perspective) – Take a close look at a student performance in terms of formative and summative assessment. Through a hands-on exercise participants will determine what needs to be assessed and generate a rubric with the groups’ ideas. Information about the Maine Arts Assessment Initiative and resources will be shared. January 19, 2013, All Aroostook Fesitval Mari-Jo Hedman, Director of Music K-12, Fort Fairfield, MSAD #20
A Skeptic’s Exploration of Rubrics – The presentation follows my research into rubrics in order to improve both the clarity of the assessment instrument for myself and my students and to find ways to genuinely involve my students in the process. January 16, 2013, Messalonskee High School, RSU 18, 4:00 to 6:15 Leone Donovan, Visual Arts, Messalonskee High School, RSU 18
Formative and Summative Assessment Two Big  Words with Practical Applications in an Art Class – Participants will create a clay sculpture and get a hands-on understanding of both formative and summative assessment as part of the creative problem-solving process January 16, 2013, Messalonskee High School, RSU 18, 4:00 to 6:15 Gloria Hewett, visual arts, grades 6-8, Mount View Middle School, RSU 3
Literacy – A Gateway to Creativity – This workshop shows how literacy strategies can be utilized to improve students’ ability to analyze artwork. Stronger art analysis abilities can change and improve students’ understanding of their own creative problem-solving process.  Assessments are discussed as a vital part of this process. January 16, 2013, Messalonskee High School, RSU 18, 4:00 to 6:15 Pamela Ouellette, visual arts, Lisbon High School
Theatre Games: Learning By Doing – Using a Theatre-based rubric allows any teacher to assess students using the MLRs, thus “hitting” standards that may not have been accessible before.  Theatre techniques will be taught to show how to enhance curriculum/learning in any subject area. January 25, 26, 2013, Mt. Ararat High School Susan Jones, chorus, theatre, social studies, Medomak Valley High School, RSU 40
A journey into the 21st Century – Changing the Way I Teach!  – Come along on my journey as I talk about the changes I am making in my Keyboarding Class to fit the learning styles of all my students! January 26, 2013, District I Music Festival, Noble High School, North Berwick Jane Kirton, chorus, keyboarding, music for the soul, Sanford High School
Assessment, A Self Help Program for the Art Teacher – My journey to understanding the power of authentic assessment and using technology to manage student product and track student growth. TBA Danette Kerrigan, Visual Art, Sacopee Valley Middle School, MSAD 55
Sighting in Rubrics: How to Hit Educational Targets – This workshop revolves around the concept of General Rubrics and how they can be used to assess a variety of different products and processes. A good portion of the workshop involves assessment of student examples and discussion of how to interpret criteria using the rubric currently used in my classes. TBA Samantha Orchard, visual arts, Woodland Jr/Sr High School, Baileyville
Conditions for a Creative Classroom Using formative assessments to promote creative thinking and student voice in the classroom. TBA Suzanne Southworth, visual arts, Camden Hills Regional High School
The Sweet Spot: Where Learning Meets Engagement              This presentation discusses the importance of engaging students in their learning and tools that can support them. TBA Barbie Weed, visual art, grades 5-8, Gray-New Gloucester Middle School, MSAD 15
How can we meaningfully assess a large and diverse student population in music classrooms?      A brief overview of: why to assess, formative verses summative, when to use which type, examples of different assessments, and Q & A TBA Andrea Wollstadt, music, grades k-5, Biddleford Intermediate School, John F. Kennedy Memorial School, Biddeford
Assessment: To Educate and Advocate!There are many benefits to bringing authentic assessment into the music classroom. This workshop will discuss fundamental core benefits by identifying connections to the student, the community at large and the classroom teacher. In doing so, the case is made for utilizing assessment as a core component of the educational landscape for all Arts educators. TBA Jarika Olberg, choral/general music, grades 2-12, Waynflete School, Portland

Professional Development Opportunities in the Arts

February 7, 2012

Join in live or listen to archived webinars

Regional Workshops:                                                                                                                 The Arts Assessment Iniative continues to offer opportunities around the state. The list of Regional Workshops being provided by the initiatives 18 Teachers Leaders are listed at

Maine Assessment Webinars:                                                                                                The Leadership and the Arts webinar, facilitated by Rob Westerberg and Catherine Ring, was held on February 1, 2012 and explored:

  • The Role of Teachers
  • The Role of Administrators
  • The Role of the greater Community

If you were not one of the 35 participants, or if you wish to hear it again, you can go to the archive at Along with the archive there is a meeting plan located at I suggest that you use the meeting plan on a school workshop day with your colleagues. Please take the time to read the plan to help you decide how to use this  valuable document. And by all means invite your administrators to participate.

There was a glitch in taping the January elementary assessment webinar that took place so it has been re-scheduled for March 14th, 3:30-4:30. You can access the link to join in at

The Arts, Common Core, and 21st Century Connections:                                              On January 17, 2012 Joyce Huser, Kansas Department of Education, Fine Arts Consultant facilitated a webinar for my colleagues from throughout the country. Joyce created documents that I am certain you will find helpful in your work at the local level. You can access the recording at Joyce includes the direct correlation between dance, music, theatre, and visual art to the Common Core State Standards, and the 21st Century Arts Skills Map. At the above page you will find the presentation Power Point, the P21 Arts Skills Map, and an ELA Strand Organizer (Joyce and her ELA partners created). Most interesting to me is a graph in the Power Point that exhibits the skill demands for arts related careers for 2008 – 2018 which shows the skills taught in arts education classes. There is a link on the webpage is the sources for the work force data in the graph.

President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities Report:                                Last week while I attended the Maine Art Education Association board meeting Rob Westerberg attended a webinar that provided information on the recently released report by the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities. Rob was kind enough send his “take-aways” from the webinar “Reinvesting in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future Through Creative Schools.” The report is posted at The culmination of 18 months of research, meetings with stakeholders, and site visits all over the country, this report represents an in-depth review of the current condition of arts education, including an update of the current research base about arts education outcomes, and an analysis of the challenges and opportunities in the field that have emerged over the past decade. It also includes a set of recommendations to federal, state and local policymakers.

In Rob’s words: A good webinar today… it hit on key components of an effective integrative strategy at the elementary and middle school levels.

  • A few quotes: “Arts Education is a flower AND a wrench” (a tool for development of creativity in the curriculum… I LOVE the analogy!)
  • “Having a good music program isn’t enough”.
  •  “Wow, schools are the ones where Arts teachers were given liscence to craft the vision for their school; were the chief creative officers for their schools.”

Rob was able to ask this question of the moderator: “How do the findings of this report tie into standards based assessment in the arts? Do they?”

Rachel Goslins response: “The report does not get into either standards or assessment… too big and messy.”

She then went on to mention the development of the national standards as the primary focal point of that discussion. In other words, it was not within the scope and sequence of this report to dive into the realm of standards or assessment.

For her final thoughts, she mentioned that “for the arts moving forward, (and I’m paraphrasing here), they must be integrated in a meaningful way, led by valued and empowered arts specialists.”

A GREAT BIG THANK YOU to Rob for sharing your notes with the blog. If you’d like to listen to the webinar please go to the archived at


Regional Presentation in Visual Arts Assessment

November 25, 2011

One of 23 workshops being given this school year



Hosted by Bates College  Education Department

Refreshments, Networking and Sign–In: Starts at 3:30PM

Workshops: 4:00 – 5:30 PM

  • Did you miss the State Arts Assessment Initiative Conference on October 7th?
  • It’s not too late to learn more about setting criteria and formative assessment!
  • Join us in connecting with other Visual Art teachers and discussing approaches to assessment!

Laura Devin presenting at statewide arts assessment conference, Oct. 7th, USM

Workshop Choices:

  • Workshop #1  – Quick, Down, Dirty AND Effective Art Assessment (K-5 Visual Art)  4:00 – 5:30 PM with Laura Devin,  Visual Art Educator,  RSU1 Bath  and Karen Wolfe; Rosemary Polizotto

Following a short, hands-on art making activity, participants will examine ways to realistically utilize a variety of assessment tools to deepen student learning in grades K-5.   We will see how a variety of practical formative assessments consistent with rubric expectations can deepen student learning and address arts standards, studio thinking, and 21st century skills.  Optional:  Sharing of a favorite assessment tool from participants is encouraged (bring 20 copies).  Take-home resources will be available in hard copy and digital forms. WORKSHOP  LIMITED TO 20 PARTICIPANTS.

  • Workshop #2  – Why create criteria based on MLR standards with student involvement ? (6-8 Visual Art) 4:00 – 5:30 PM with Jeffrey Orth, Visual Art Educator Richmond Middle/High School

Worried about involving students in creating criteria for art works? Using MLR standards with students? In this workshop we will go through the process of working with student in creating criteria aligned with MLR standards. WORKSHOP  LIMITED TO 20 PARTICIPANTS.

  • Workshop #3  – Finding the Hidden Treasure in Art with Student Self Assessments (9-12 Visual Art) 4:00 – 5:30 PM with Jennie Driscoll, Visual Art Educator Brunswick High School

Participants will create a small art work and practice the use of exemplars, setting criteria, and use of assessments to inform revision.  Come explore the benefits for learning that come with student self assessments.  WORKSHOP LIMITED TO 20 PARTICIPANTS.

Please RSVP by to Jennie Driscoll to attend one of these free workshops by December 5th.  Please give your name, email, and workshop choice.

Workshops will be held at Bates College, Pettingill Hall, Ground Floor Rooms G10, G 21 and G 50.  Check-in is in room  G04 starting at 3:30 PM.  Workshop start at 4:00PM . For location/ directions/ parking  see building #55, go to:

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