Art is the answer. Despite an ever-changing and increasingly complex world, no matter what you ask or how you frame the question there is one thing I know for sure….art is the answer. Art engages, art heals, art challenges, and art is transformative. I seek to create a joyful, calm, challenging, and engaging space for children to explore the world, their art and ultimately the power that lives within them. No matter the question; whether we want our students to have a voice and be able make our world a better place, or to be proud of themselves, or to be engaged in their own learning, art is always the answer.
To prepare our students for the future, we must give them the tools of creativity, critical thinking and innovation to prepare for it. Art is a vibrant, living and dynamic expression of our humanity; it is timeless and universal. Through the artistic process of envisioning, creating, engaging, persisting, and expressing, artists learn resilience, grit, determination and purpose in art. Cultivating the journey to create art is my life’s work and my hope each day as I pour paint, or teach children how to blend colors, how to compare and contrast two works of art; each lesson teaches my students how to use their voice to grow, change and curate the world we once imagined.
To teach art, is to facilitate the important work of an artist finding their own solutions, problems and expression within our world. The journey is one that can be complex, frustrating, joyful, infuriating and rewarding. As an art teacher, I work to create safe space for all emotions to be welcome, supported and worked through. By having this time and space to learn and grow, artists are able to stretch themselves to do their personal best and ultimately feel a sense of pride and confidence in oneself. With this beam of confidence, each child can take on the challenges in and outside of the classroom.
In addition to the power of the arts in the visual art classroom, I feel it is my responsibility to extend the vast opportunities the arts provide to best practice teaching into all content areas with all teachers and learners. Creating and cultivating a professional learning community of arts integrated strategies to access all content areas from writing, reading, math, science and social studies is paramount to my philosophy and approach to education. Being that art is an intrinsic and inherently engaging vehicle and source of learning, it is key to use the arts as a way to take on every type of learning challenges, skills and readiness for the future.
The power of an art education is boundless. I am proud to be able to create a space of joy, refuge, love, challenge, excitement, engagement, and creativity for the young children who walk into our school each day. This time and space is precious and I strive to use it collaboratively, creatively, and compassionately with each child, colleague and family to make our world more colorful, beautiful, and a better place…because art is the answer.