SchoolArts Magazine

APR 2014

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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M A N A G I N G T H E A R T R O O M The Student Creative Matt Cauthron sibility of connecting classrooms was more real than ever before. The fact that it could happen might just have been reason enough to make it hap- pen. Together, David and I developed "Paint the World with Light," a com- mon project that we felt was inter- esting enough for other educators; wrangled in a worthy advisor, Mike Skocko of the Mac Lab at Valhalla High School in Southern California; and pursued our passion to connect others through our own and com- bined professional networks. At the end of the project, we published the collection of student works, with the proceeds benefiting the Jacaranda Foundation in Malawi. Eventually our project sprouted wings and we saw it hit NPR's photog- raphy blog, The Picture Show. Even as grown men, we seriously geeked out about the e-mail requesting student work from such a prestigious site. Ego (and geek) aside, the big idea was always to showcase student creativity and connect imagery through a com- mon denominator. Our mission was playing out. The Challenges Each project and each year has proved to be interesting. Like a snowball slowly gaining momentum down a five-year hill, we have seen some amazing student work come from multiple countries and from several continents. TSC continues to create challenges that are not just "one-trick ponies," but ones that will live on in a teacher's tool kit and excite creativity on a regular basis. Matt Cauthron is an Apple Distinguished Educator, Adobe Education Leader, and ISTE Outstanding Teacher from the Digi- tal Arts Technology Academy near Palm Springs, California. Connect with him on Twitter @imagemonki. W E B L I N K S collaborate on challenges based on common themes. TSC came about while I was working on the Challenge- Based Learning (CBL) framework with Apple. This was on the heels of Sir Ken Robinson's well-known 2006 TED Talk, "How Schools Kill Creativity." Since Apple Education was asking our team of educa - tors from across the country to come up with something new, different, and person - alized, I figured that I s hould apply the same principles to my own curriculum and challenge my stu - dents in the digital arts. A Brief History After many transcontinental tweets and a Skype session or two with University of Florida professor, Craig Roland, I had some direction and con- nected with another digital arts edu- cator, David Gran, who was utilizing the same resources and blog template as I. I was intrigued that he was teach- ing at the Shanghai American School in China. As far as I knew, pen pals had long ago disappeared, but the pos- T wenty years ago while com- pleting my BA in studio art, I attended a presentation by a speaker who said that the art- ist's role should be one of active lead- ership within his or her own commu- nity. At the time I found this slightly disturbing, especially since my life goal was to spend my career blissfully tucked away in the studio. After twenty years in the classroom, I have a deeper under - standing of what that speaker was trying to communicate. Through a variety of media arts tools, we now have the ability to offer stu - dents greater access to the creative p rocess and an incredibly wider con- nection to our local and global com- munities. With this in mind, I'd like to s hare a collection of global arts chal- lenges that have developed under the u mbrella of a collaborative called The Student Creative (TSC). The Student Creative Through TSC, secondary students from around the globe are invited to The big idea was always to showcase student creativity and connect imagery through a common denominator. Callie Peterson, Dia de Los Muertos, Corona Del Mar High School, Newport Beach, California. Piece created for the Student Creative's project, "MyThology." 12 April 2014 SchoolArts 11_18_4_14.indd 12 2/20/14 3:02 PM

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