Reviewing 2011, Looking Ahead to 2012

Just as so many sites are doing, I too am giving you a look at the past year and a glimpse into the future of The Inspired Classroom.

This year saw some fun new ventures.  I held my first arts integration grad course this summer with great success.  Also this summer was the first ever Teacher Art Retreat!  The three days we teachers spent together were simply fabulous.  (I encourage you to check out the post and slide show of pictures.)  It was such a great way to end our summers and prepare for the school year.

Online, we changed the look of the website.  It feels cleaner and well, it just needed a change.   There was also an addition made just this past month to our book store of arts integration books and eResources.  Celebrate Beethoven in the Classroom was put out just in time for the composer’s birthday and many people took advantage of that!

Of course, there was a lot of material put forth in our posts.  Here are some highlights:

We started the year with a series on Getting Started with Arts Integration:

5 Keys to Teaching with Arts Integration

Kick stART to Arts Integration

…but I’m not an artist…

Here is a list of links about the creativity in ourselves as well as ways to promote it in our students.

These two posts were written to emphasize the difference between arts integration and arts education and the importance of each:

ArtsEd vs ArtsInt

Arts Integration Cannot Replace Arts Education

This one is not from this year, but continues to be a good standby for what arts integration is and is not.  With great comments to read through and ideas to ponder: What is True Arts Integration

Face Your Fears of Arts Integration was an interesting post to which one of our guest bloggers, Melissa Edwards wrote her own series of posts on her website on the topic of teachers’ fears with technology integration.  It’s a great post to check out!

Susan Riley of Education Closet guest blogged this year.  Her mini series focused on how to make school wide arts integration work.

March was a fun series as it focused on Music and Literacy .

A direct effect of all the work teachers did over the summer working with the creative process was the Creative Process series in September with guest posts from a variety of educators.  🙂

And you may be interested in checking out the series on Multiple Intelligences from February, 2011.  I learned a lot while blogging that month!

It amazes me that a post from January 2010 continues to be the top Googled and viewed post on the site: Norman Rockwell – Drawing Conclusions Activity  It seems a lot of teachers are looking for ways to teach drawing conclusions.  (hmmm…)

Finally, here’s a guest post from Kristina Peterson: Teaching is an Art.  It’s a good read for a new year and a fresh start.

 

It’s been three years since I started blogging.  My, how time flies!  I’ve spent a few hours this past week browsing my own musings and seeing how I’ve grown as a writer, blogger, site host, educator and working wife and mom.   If  you follow me regularly, you may have noticed how in the last few weeks I have really been contemplating how I use my time and energy.  Posts such as Less is More and Put Things into Perspective have certainly allowed me to rethink things.

In 2012, it is my hope to continue to bring you quality posts on topics we teachers find so important.  I also continue to welcome other educators to guest post throughout the year.  In fact, I have some great guests posts lined up for you already!

Although my posts  will be less frequent, I will be putting my time to good use as I work hard to publish new material that is relevant and practical for teachers to use in their own classrooms.   Projected ebooks (and also in print) are Studio Days and a series of independent studies for students.  These will be projects that can be used for your entire class or a select few.  They will be differentiated in nature so that students are able to challenge themselves with their work.  My other big project for this coming year is the second annual Teacher Retreat where teachers will gather to enjoy each others’ company as they create and learn new arts inspired methods of teaching.

I thank you for your readership.  Your continued reading, commenting and emails keep me motivated and typing away!  I wish you the best in this new year!

~EMP

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Article by Elizabeth Peterson

Elizabeth Peterson has devoted her life to education and to reaching out to other teachers who want to remain inspired. Mrs. Peterson teaches fourth grade in Amesbury, Massachusetts and is the host of www.theinspiredclassroom.com. She holds an M.Ed. in Education, “Arts and Learning” and a C.A.G.S. degree with a focus in “Arts Leadership and Learning.” Elizabeth is author of Inspired by Listening, a teacher resource book that includes a method of music integration she has developed and implemented into her own teaching. She teaches workshops and courses on the integration of the arts into the curriculum and organizes the annual summer Teacher Art Retreat. Mrs. Peterson believes there is a love of active, integrated learning in all children and from their enthusiasm, teachers can shape great opportunities to learn.
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Are you ready for the next Summer Teacher Art Retreat ? Be sure to check out this great PD experience for Creative Teachers!