The best thing that happened to me in the nine years teaching art (besides
this list) is that a group of art teachers invited me to their monthly
meetings. All the art teachers are creative and highly dedicated to
teaching art in a stimulating fashion. There are about a dozen of us
(mostly elementary and a few middle school). We meet the third Thursday of
each month at 4:00 for a pot luck and wine at one of our homes. We bring
student's samples of projects we are proud of. We take turns and quickly
discuss the history, culture, production, etc. The rest of us take digital
photos for reference.
If we decide to do this project with our own students, we can do it the same
way, but usually each person puts their own spin on it and sometimes brings
it back to show.
We are mostly from different districts (although I just brought in a great
teacher from mine- teaches the same level as me). I can't describe the
wealth of information I receive. Its like Judy's site come alive. (sort
We are not competitive at all, maybe because we are from different
districts. But I think because we have all embraced this forum for sharing,
similar to this list, everyone is very happy to help each other. Only once
in my nine years did our district hold a meeting for the art teachers to
share. It was good but all the teachers don't have the same level of quality
teaching) If I saw another teacher's students work displayed from my
district, I wouldn't take one of their "original ideas" (if I saw it
displayed), unless it was offered to me. (And I put my own spin on it).
Also, our district is a little competitive because we have a magnet school
system and parents get to choose their children's schools.
I'm writing about this because perhaps some of you might want to form your
own groups. We also now have a state ID and get professional development
credit from the state. This group has been meeting about 15 years. We
bring our student teachers also. Some people retire, some new ones join.
Its fabulous and FUN! We also get to whine about our principals, students,
etc (a little bit while we imbibe)