This past July, I was lucky to spend time at the Peabody Essex Museum's Summer Teacher Institute, Artist as Innovator. The summer institute included about 20 teacher participants from various disciplines. The course is available to all teachers who want to learn more about art and educational techniques. I signed up for the course because I thought it would be a unique and fun experience to learn about art and contemporary art education practices. This institute really got me to think about how I run my classroom; I took away many practices that I have already used in this school year. I was able to meet so many teachers with such insight into education. We had wonderful conversations and built a strong community throughout the week. We even were able to preview the upcoming Strandbeest exhibit before it opened! Take a look at some of the things we did.
Making Art with a Practicing Artist
Julia Marshall - Keynote Speaker
Concept Mapping is a diagram that allows people to brainstorm relationships between topics. It is usually organized in a hierarchal fashion. Concepts and ideas flow through natural brainstorming and conversation, sometimes showing cross-links. I really enjoyed the idea of concept mapping to help student brainstorming techniques.
Learning Some New Technology
We were able to get a sneak peek of Theo Jansen's exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum, Strandbeest. Theo Jansen is a Dutch artist who has been working on his Strandbeest for over 20 years. The Peabody Essex Museum asked us to create a lesson plan using Strandbeest as the central theme. I plan on creating a lesson plan in my web design class utilizing storytelling techniques using the Adobe Slate app.
To learn more, read this great New York Times article.
I teach art at Burlington High School in Burlington, Massachusetts. My goals include teaching my students to live and thrive with 21st century learning skills while helping them to learn valuable creative artistic thinking and technical skill.