Sunday, July 19, 2009

Arts Infusion in Alabama

Top: Tina Cherry, assistant; and Durinda
Bottom: A classroom full of teachers
Last week I was in L.A. (Lower Alabama) to teach for a workshop on Arts Infusion. I love that title! We met at the lovely Troy University of Dothan. Teachers from two schools in Dothan, Grandview and Fain Elementary, came for four days of training in presenting the arts along with their regular subjects. We began with a study of Texas artist David Bates who paints people and places that he loves. Our first production was a collage showing a favorite place or memory. Tuesday we worked with Leonardo da Vinci and his work with portraits and inventions. The photo shows the teachers' faces they drew using a grid method of drawing. Wednesday was the study of Jacob Lawrence and his depiction of the scenes and people of Harlem where he lived.
Teachers created paintings with tempera (remember that?). What fun!
It can be out of your comfort zone to paint or draw if you don't ordinarily do anything like that. I was proud that each of them, including their principals and program directors, attempted the productions. I think the arts are VITAL to a child's education and providing them the opportunity to communicate through the arts is so important. We want our children to be creative thinkers and problem solvers. Their world is going to be so different than ours, who knows what problems they will face in the future? Let's give them the tools to be creative!!
Check out for more on teacher professional development this summer.
Spreading the Gospel of Art....

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