Saturday, May 25, 2013

Annual Conference Workshops - what do you prefer?


This post is especially directed toward my blog-readers right here in NY State, though I welcome readers, opinions, and comments from anyone/anywhere!
What types of workshops most interest you at your annual conference?  Please help me sort out what to present this year!!

This coming November, NYSATA (NY State Art Teachers Association) will be having its annual conference in Albany, and I plan to be there!  For the past 8 or 9 years, I have annually presented workshop(s) at the conference.  In the beginning, I chose to do this because I was dissatisfied with workshop offerings and thought I could do better.  But I didn't expect the perks.  First of all, there's the wonderful people I've met and formed friendships with over the years.  Then, there's the reputation it gives you back in your home district.  How can your administration help but be proud of you?  And then of course, how can they refuse your attendance at the conference when they know you are attending as a presenter as well as an attendee?  And finally, there's the refining of your presentation that you have to do in preparation, that certainly makes you better at what you do.  I've loved every minute of it, so much that over the past couple of years I went from teaching one workshop, to two, and then to three. Which I'll probably do again this year, crazy as I am!

Now, as a retiree, attending workshops may not always be as meaningful to me as presenting, so I'm trying to decide what my workshops will be this year, as the deadline to submit workshop proposals looms ahead.
 
  Over the past years, I have done several presentations on papier-mache (a personal favorite medium for working with kids), including last year. I've taught an altered book workshop showcasing the fabulous work of my 6th graders, a (hands-on) weaving workshop, a workshop on blogging, and several workshops on multiple lesson ideas (including "A Plethora of Pleasing Projects", "Great Ideas with Recycled Materials", and other variations of easy project ideas).  I've also taught (three times) a workshop on the amazing flexagon, in particular the trihexaflexagon, a wonderful magical mathematical creation.

So what should I present this year?  Below are some ideas I've toyed with -
 *Please note: you will not find me offering pedagogical workshops, or workshops on the Common Core, or anything else like that.  I know you may need to attend them, and that's fine, but I want my workshops to provide a break, a respite, from all the stress and jargon.  I want my workshops to inspire you creatively, to make you smile, and to be a memorable conference experience.  So anyhow, here are some of my ideas:

  • A repeat of the hands-on flexagon workshop, which I previously taught in 2011, 2009, and 2007.  Would there still be an audience?  Would attendees be willing to pay a fee of $1 or $2 to cover the cost of the materials? (Remember, I no longer have a classroom to 'borrow' materials from.)
  •  A hands-on workshop on working in relief with tooling foil.  I think I have had great student success with this material.  Again, I would need to charge for materials.  If this workshop interests you, would you prefer it be a double-session workshop during the day, or a Friday After Dark workshop? (The FAD workshops generally charge a fee of $25 and are a little longer in duration.  If I teach it during the day, the materials fee would be no more than $5.)
 
 
  •   A Friday After Dark workshop on relief carving in sheetrock?  (I began doing this with my 6th grade students after attending a FAD workshop on this marvelous process, probably 10 years ago.  So I'd be 'paying it forward' if I presented such a workshop.  But due to time and materials, it would have to be a FAD workshop.)
  •  A workshop presenting various painting and color theory lessons and processes, with a focus on liquid tempera paint management and cleanup.  I suggest this because some of you blog that you don't use liquid tempera because of the mess.  While I have nothing against liquid watercolors (they are great!) or brick tempera, I feel we do kids a disservice when we don't give them the 'real' paint experience of dipping a brush into creamy thick tempera.  There's nothing else like it!

 
  •  A repeat of the altered book workshop or a variation of some other workshop I've already taught?  Something papier-mache?  Weaving? Another potpourri of stuff?
 
  •   Something totally different? Something specific to an artist? (if so, anyone in particular?)  Louise Nevelson relief sculpture? (This one could be hands-on, I suppose.) Something based on an art movement? (Surrealism? Fauvism?  Pop Art?)  A workshop on teaching perspective?  Cave painting?  Still life? Collage ideas?  Or something I'm totally not even thinking of?  Perhaps something perhaps you saw me post on the blog you want to know more about?
     So I want your opinions, ideas, favorites.  What would you want to attend?  What have you attended in the past that you've loved/hated?  How do you feel about the Friday After Dark workshops?  What do you wish I would present, and what would you NOT attend?  Please leave comments!!!!

    9 comments:

    1. Phy,

      When is the conference and do they let people from out of state attend? I would love to go to a conference so close to home and would put in for the dates right away to assure my attendance!!! I really want to be around out Art professionals for a change! Kim

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      1. Thanks for responding, Kim. The conference is November 22-24. Am i remembering correctly that you are in Vermont? Otherwise, where are you that is close by?
        Out-of-staters are welcome to attend; the conference rate is just higher for non-members. You can find out more at the organization's conference page:
        http://www.nysata.org/2013-conference

        More info will be added as available, but it already has $$ rates posted etc.

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      2. The Berkshires of Massachusetts. I will definitely check it out. Maybe I'll surprise you and attend!!!

        Kim

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      3. I'd love to see you there, but I was curious about MA so I googled it, and the MA Art Ed Association has its annual conference in Dartmouth the weekend of November 9/10. Have you ever attended that?

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    2. Oh, didn't answer, I love the idea of recycled materials

      Kim

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      1. Thanks. I did that last year, but even if I don't repeat it, I use recyclables for almost everything in some way anyhow, so you'd certainly get a taste of it!

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    3. All of those sound awesome. Any hands on workshop I'm used to paying a fee. My favorite one that I went to when I first started teaching was called Oodles of ideas. I think they presented about 30 quick ides...rapid fire .. with handouts. As a new teacher that was awesome. You should do paper mache as that is your specialty.

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    4. I wish I could attend a papier mache one.

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    5. You're so creative and talented.

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