The Summer Institute on Contemporary Art

The Summer Institute on Contemporary Art


The Summer Institute on Contemporary Art, is a week long institute, and we decided that we wanted to work together in the museum and provide professional development and opportunity for teachers in the summer. But specifically on contemporary art and focused in a way that was a collaborative, uh co-consruction, of knowledge approach, where everyone in a participatory manor was able to be part of each others professional development. We’ve had public school teachers, we’ve had private school teachers, art museum educators and we’ve actually had a few people who don’t teach art, their general teachers. I think having all of those voices, uh, distinct, but all important, have really enriched the outcome of the program. We hope that they develop a better sense of the ways that works of art, in specifically contemporary works of art suggest big ideas, themes and concepts that are central to curricular studies. Looking at certain things and examining them and asking questions, and doing so in a way thats open for a lot of people to able to engage in conversations. In ways that we can investigate ideas of what what it means to be human. What it means to create art, what it means to search for knowledge and develop understanding, so we hope that they, they find out a knowledge base from and through interpretations of works of art to develop curriculum for their students. I was hoping for something that was really relevant to me specifically because of any of the inservice experiences that I’ve had, or any other after forty-eight hours, they seem to be relevant to everyone except for me. Having the whole museum, especially the contemporary art section as you can say our art canvas. That experience was just central to, um, the whole thing. ‘Cause all through college, um, we looked at, you know Picasso and all the, you know Frida Kahlo and Georgia O’Keeffe and just all of the easy ones. The people that have so much information about them, and to talk about contemporary works and artist that I don’t know, um was very, was very new to me. It was very nice. And it went well beyond my expectations of being relevant to what I do. Its not often that I have seen follow up studies on what happens to the teachers after they leave, these professional development institutes or workshops. At some point, I think we would really love to be able to see how some people are, um, actually instituting this in their classroom. What did they take away? Not in the first week, or two weeks after the institute and their still thinking about how wonderful this experience was or how interesting it was. But how do we translate we they did over the course of the week, into their own practice in their classrooms? And what does it mean for their students? How do they take what they did and revise it? I’d like to think of what we;re doing as not as a one time in the summer, but it’s an ongoing, a sustained relationship with teachers. that not only helps them with their professional development, but it also has implications for learning for the students and that’s really what it comes down to, is what does this mean for the children, for the learners?

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