Illinois Art Education Association Fall Conference 2016

Part of being a good teacher is continuing to learn yourself.  The fall Illinois Art Education Association Conference is one of my favorite places to learn and grow as an art educator!  For the past 5 years I have both attended the conference and presented different sessions and workshops.  This year I hosted a workshop on creating plaster masks and a session on ditching the grade book and using feedback to inspire learning.  In addition to hearing several PHENOMENAL keynote speakers, I attended several sessions and workshops.

The conference was held at the Marriott Hotel on in Normal, Illinois right on the Illinois State University Campus.  The conference opened up to speaker Cassie Stephens, one of my favorite art educators from Tennessee who has found her passion in fashion and dresses each day to match her lessons!  Her energy and enthusiasm for the profession is an inspiration!  After hearing her speak I was fortunate to work with Cassie in a small group setting attending her needle felting workshop where I was able to embellish a scarf with flowers that I actually wore the next day!

After lunch, I led a session on creating plaster masks and even convinced some of my art teacher friends to climb up on the tables and have their face "plastered!"  The workshop was a huge hit amongst the teachers and they loved the opportunity to sit and make art for two hours.

In the evening I attended an awards dinner and then a small group Q and A session with Cassie where we were able to ask her all sorts of questions about her philosophy on teaching art.

Saturday was kicked off with the student reception for all the students, teachers and families of the artists selected for this year's show.  Right after, I presented a session on using feedback to inspire learning and shy away from using points in the classroom as a way to assess learning.  Then it was already lunchtime!  

The final workshop I attended was on how to build and design your own ukulele from a box kit!  WOW!  I do not find myself to be a strong musician, so I was definitely pushing myself out of my typical comfort zone.  I look forward to carving out some time to finish my design and then use the ukulele in class!


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