Nov 17, 2010

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NAEA Monthly Mentor

If you haven’t yet, check out the Monthly Mentor from the NAEA’s Website.  Each month NAEA features a new individual in the field who writes about art education.  This month they are featuring Dr. Judith Haynes.  Dr. Judith Haynes has been an art educator for over 25 years. Currently, she teaches elementary art in Northern Kentucky and teaches two classes in the Master of Arts program at The Art Academy of Cincinnati.

Although I do not know Dr. Haynes, I feel a connection with her.  Her writing speaks to me and the topics she has chosen to write about are the exact topics I feel passionate about and motivated to learn more about in the field of art education.

For example, her post Staying The Course, talks about herself as an art educator and the bumpy road she took to achieve her career goals, in her own way. I find myself looking ahead, and wondering what my career path will look like and what steps I might take to get there. She really lays it out and tells you that it is ok for you to do things in your own way and find a path that fits you best. She also talks about balance. Finding that balance between your career, your family, your life and your education. Don’t we all need balance?

She also posted about professionalism, which I feel can sometimes be a lost art in the field of art education. I am not sure why this can happen. Just because we are art teachers, does not mean that we need to necessarily come in jeans to everything :) Judith states “Professionalism for many art teachers is natural.  However, I speak to those of us who struggle daily with organization, wardrobe, communications, artistic creation and leadership.”  She goes on to talk about these topics.

I especially like the paragraph on leadership. She says “Leadership is exhibited through volunteering for those tasks that make your schools, local, state and national organizations operate well.  School programs and committees benefit our students and staff.  These activities actually carve out your “niche” in art education.  Leadership also can be reflected in continuing your education throughout life!”

I am working to find my “niche” at all times.  Working to find where I fit in the world of art teachers, the world of bloggers, the world of leaders, the world of artists, the world of teachers and even my role in my own family and community. This process is ongoing, but learning from those you admire, and learning as an ongoing process are great tickets to continue to solidify your “place” in the field.  Even this blog alone has helped me to find more closely my place in this field.

Have you found your “place” in the field of art education?  What are you striving for?





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