NASAA Notes: September 2020

September 2, 2020

DE, MD, NJ, NY, PA, VA, WV: 2020 Mid-Atlantic Teaching Artists Virtual Retreat

Teaching artists play a valuable role in bridging the gap between the arts and education, bringing their unique skillsets and experience to a wide variety of classrooms and communities. However, there is limited opportunity for teaching artists to engage in professional development and share their experiences with one another on a large scale. Recognizing this need and the value in a regional network of teaching artists, the Delaware Division of the Arts, Maryland State Arts Council, New Jersey State Council on the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Virginia Commission for the Arts, and West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History have partnered again to sponsor the 2020 Mid-Atlantic Teaching Artists Virtual Retreat. In cooperation with the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, this biennial event is designed to support the creative careers of teaching artists.

Now in its second iteration, the 2020 Mid-Atlantic Teaching Artists Retreat has offered a host of skill-building workshops and networking opportunities on a variety of timely topics. Sessions this year focus on financial tools, artistic knowledge, educational pedagogy and self-care practices. The event as a whole is also designed to include a greater focus on teaching artists as leaders in diverse, equitable and inclusive practices. This focus is evident in sessions such as:

  • Art as Microphone: Empowering Student Voices through Transformative Art Education
  • Applying Indigenous African Principles in the Classroom: Decolonizing the Classroom
  • Putting “Community” at the Center of a Community Based Arts Organization
  • Creative Aging during COVID
  • Teaching Artist as Leader, Entrepreneur and Futurist

As with so many things, COVID-19 has changed the presentation of the retreat. Beyond running sessions that identify solutions to the challenges of working during COVID-19, NASAA and the partner state arts agencies have used this as an opportunity to expand the accessibility of the retreat. In 2018, 60 teaching artists were able to participate in the two-day retreat. Now, with the retreat being virtual, more than 500 teaching artists have registered for the 20+ sessions that are taking place over the month of August. Online sessions have brimmed with anywhere from 25 to 170 participants, widely expanding the regional network of teaching artists. NASAA and its partners have been working to record the events, making them accessible to teaching artists across the states via NASAA’s YouTube channel. For more information on the Mid-Atlantic Teaching Artists Virtual Retreat, contact NASAA’s Professional Development Institute Manager, Susan Oetgen.

In this Issue

From the President and CEO

State to State

Legislative Update

The Research Digest

Announcements and Resources

More Notes from NASAA




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