Sunday, October 27, 2013

Reflections On the IAEA Conference

The annual Illinois Art Education Association Conference was this past Friday and Saturday. Although I have been teaching for over 18 years, and have attended a handful of national conferences, I had never attended my own state's conference. So this was my first, but not my last, time attending.

I went to as many workshops and presentations as I could. Many were full of ideas that I could take back to my art students - both my K-5 students and my ArtsyBug Studio students of all ages. Some gave me ideas to pass on to my colleagues who teach middle or high school. Some of the sessions gave me ideas for my own artwork.  A few provided some new ideas or things to add to projects or lessons I already do.

Here's a glimpse of what I took away from some of the presentations I attended:
Everything Apple: Getting Techie
Technology is a big part of my teaching and daily life. I use technology in the art room and I teach about using technology both to my elementary students and Art Education teachers for The Art of Ed. I am an Apple lover....the Mac kind...not granny smith. So I was excited to see what ideas a group of great art teachers had for using Apple products in the art room. Among the group were the ladies from The Teaching Palette - Theresa McGee and Hillary Andrlik.
Some great ideas that came from here:

  • Tips for Artsonia
    • Using QR Codes to have students access the site to complete artist statements on Artsonia (new classroom mode)
    • Create an iPad stand to help students photograph artwork. Now to find someone to make this for me - times for each of my buildings with Artsonia galleries.
    • Using the microphone built into the newest iOS update on the iPads to differentiate. Students who need to can speak their artist statements instead of type.
  • Ideas for Brushes or Sketchbook X with other apps
    • Trees in perspective - Traditional painting combined with Brushes to duplicate, resize, and paint background. Then use Animator Free to animate it snowing.
    • Photograph a figure then use Brushes to erase background and create a digital one
  • GarageBand or Screen Chomp to add student talking about artwork and/or process they took.
  • Skitch to teach 1 point perspective.
    • Students photograph part of the hallway and then mark up arrows to the vanishing point.
  • iBook Author - So many possibilities!
    • Could be used as assessment
    • Use to add poem to artwork then video tape student reading using Photobooth
    • Creative writing and SoundCloud - record story or writing about artwork using GarageBand
When Animals Attack...the Art Room! - Deyana Matt
  • This presentation gave me a ton of ideas for lessons using animals! 
Here are my favorites - 

Meeting Common Core in the Art Classroom -  Let me preface this by saying that I'm not a fan of the whole CCS movement for reasons I'm not going into here. But it is here and we need to show that the Arts can and do play a major role in the whole education of our students. 

  • This session took a look at the Common Core ELA and Math Standards and how we as art educators can meet many of these standards in our art program. Ideas for focusing first on the anchor standards were shared. There was quite a lot of information here that would take up an entire post so I'm not going to go into all of it.
  • Let me just say that we don't need to change our whole curriculum to help meet these standards. Take a look at what you already do and see where you can expand to meet those standards.

I love to create art even more than I love to teach it so I made sure to attend some hands-on workshops!
Monoprinting Using Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plates
~I've been wanting to try one of these Gelli plates for awhile now!

Wonderfully Wild with Wool ~Oh What Fun!!
Learned about wet felting and my new favorite - needle felting!


My first needle felted sculpture!

 Concentric Kirigami ~Cut paper fun!

Oh...and one of the best parts - I won a few raffles which included these two awesome items:
A Gelli plate and a basket full of wool!

But the best part...getting to visit and collaborate with friends in person who I normally only talk with online!
Mona meets Starry Night!


  1. Great Post! I am attending the Texas Art Association meeting next month. You all have a leg up on me in Technology.

    1. Beth - have a great time at yours! If you ever want to take some online classes in technology created for art teachers take a look at We can help you jump ahead using technology in the art room!

  2. Looks like so much fun! Great ideas to explore.