Arts Integration Project Wraps UpMonday, June 25, 2018

In May, final Peer-to-Peer workshops for the (C3)2 project were held. Fourth and fifth grade teachers and teaching artists attended a day-long workshop for their grade level in several arts venues in Patchogue, LI, including the Patchogue Theatre for Performing Arts (above). Participants were given an opportunity to explore, create, present and reflect.

Each workshop began at the Patchogue Arts Gallery, where collage and assemblage artworks by local artist were on display. Beth Giacummo, executive director of the Patchogue Arts Council (along with being a (C3)2 teaching artist), welcomed the (C3)2 teachers, teaching artists and administrative team (above photo, far left).

Next, (C3)2 curriculum director Laura Reader (above) welcomed the group and shared the day’s agenda. Afterwards, she challenged the teachers and artists to engage with the gallery’s exhibit. The group was asked to consider how an artwork might be a metaphor for something in their lives. For the most part, the teachers saw the works as a metaphor for the school year, especially as it wraps up and staff and students plan for their summer break.

 Workshop participants then strolled over Main Street to visit the Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts (photo, below). Loretta Corbisiero, (C3)2 project director, thanked everyone for their participation in the 4-year grant. “While the project is coming to a close, the work will continue.” According to Ms. Corbisiero, funding has been allocated for the dissemination of the project’s positive impact on teachers and their students. “We would like to ask you to think about dissemination after you leave today. We may call upon you to present with us at upcoming conferences.”

For the remainder of the morning session, teams of teachers and teaching artists worked to create a Pecha Kucha for their spring 2018 projects. (A Pecha Kucha is a story-boarded PowerPoint.)


Ms. Reeder explained the goal for these slide presentations. “For this final Pecha Kucha, I would like you to either summarize your last project or the last three years," she instructed. "Also, think about your audience. For example, are you creating a summary for parents, administrators, children, the community, or peer teachers?”


As a warm-up, Ms. Reeder asked the teachers to share a few examples of the project's benefits for students and teacher (see box, below). 


How Did the (C3)Partnership Benefit Student Learning and Teaching Practices?


Here are a few of the accolades given to (C3)2 teaching artists and their residencies by the teachers who collaborated with them:

  • We worked with Kendra on simple machine. The project offered lots of movement. When the residency was over, I didn’t have to supplement Kendra's work. She was really awesome.
  • My student worked with Beth on a mobile and the traveling suitcase. There was an opportunity for students to write about why they picked the artwork they chose for their mobiles.
  • Since Dafna’s residency, I started a readers’ theater center. The students are fighting to do that work.  

As the teams worked on their summaries, representatives from Metis Associates, who are evaluating the impact of the (C3)2 project on teachers and students, pulled groups of artists, classroom teachers and speciality teachers aside for focus group discussions (below).

After lunch, the workshop moved to a presentation space in the Patchogue-Medford Library, where the different teams of teachers and teaching artists presented their Pecha Kuchas. The presentations emphasized student and teacher growth, and showed evidence of creativity and collaboration during the partnership of artists and teachers. Here’s a videoclip of one group’s presentation:

The day wrapped up with the (C3)2 participants gathering in a circle and sharing reflections on their partnership with teachers and teaching artists. (below).


Teachers and Teaching Artists’ Final Reflection


Here are some of the final thoughts from project partners: 

  • Teacher: Whether the artist created some fabulous movements or fabulous art with the students, he or she provided great tie-ins to the classroom lessons. I loved having the artists in my classroom.
  • Teacher: I was grateful to the artists for bringing their specialties into my classroom. They were fearless. They worked with so many different teacher and student personalities, some of whom were receptive and some of whom were not. The artists were flexible and kept thinking out of the box.
  • Teacher: I thank all the artist who were so gentle with the kids and so inclusive.
  • Teaching artist: I want to thank all the teachers for being so accommodating, for letting us make a mess and move their classroom furniture. We walked into well-organized classrooms and pushed everything aside. We know that was disruptive that was for teachers.
  • Teaching artist: Without the teachers' guidance, my work wouldn’t have been possible. Working with the teachers and re-learning the content made me a better artist for the (C3)2 project and beyond.  


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