I’ve been an art educator for six years, and the most important lesson I have had to learn is that every child is unique in how they see, hear, interpret, understand, and create. My students range in age from 7-18 and their interests and abilities are as variable as their ages. All students work at a pace that suits them best, so I do not teach to a group, but rather to an individual. I attribute my success, and the success of my students, to my ability in the classroom to adapt to and be flexible for each of them individually.
As an artist myself, I must regularly practice my craft in order to make creative and technical connections in my own work and in the classroom. I take classes and experiment with new artistic processes in order to continue educating myself. I share my new learning experiences with my students to encourage them to try new things and to always be willing to learn new concepts. I have found through my personal practice and
education that problem solving in my own creative process helps me problem solve when it comes to my students’ work; and likewise, when they find a problem solution in their creations, it provides me insight for issues I may be experiencing in my own art.
The constant shift between my own painting and my time in the classroom has made me stronger both as an artist and a teacher, and I consider myself to be extraordinarily fortunate to be both a practicing artist and an art educator – two activities I love and hope to continue doing for a very long time.