~ Get Your Summer PD by the Ocean ~

3 Days of Professional Development & Inspiration!

The Inspired Classroom is happy to announce its 8th annual Teacher Art Retreat

August 6th, 7th & 8th, 2018    8-3:30 each day

Things are getting S.T.E.A.M.y at the BEACH!

We are bringing STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) concepts to our workshops again this year and we are doing so on the ocean!  Our location is on Hampton Beach and we plan to take advantage of that!

Relax ~ Create ~ Discover

Registration for the retreat is closed.  Check out the UPCOMING Retreat!

If you would like to print a letter to your administrator detailing more information about The Inspired Classroom’s retreats, please press this button.

"Our 8th Summer Retreat? and it's at the BEACH??" Click for a Message from Elizabeth...

This is something I’ve been envisioning for years!  A retreat at the beach!  And it’s finally happening!  I’m very excited to be able to invite you to another 3 days full of engaging workshops that will stretch your learning, cultivate your creativity and fill your need for professional development.

For the past 7 summers teachers have been coming to these retreats to Get Inspired, so that they can BE Inspiring to their students.  It is for us, by us.  That means, it’s Teacher-Centered, the BEST kind of professional development you can find!

Ask any retreater who has been to one of these before!

“[The retreat] will recharge my batteries and help prepare me for the upcoming school year.” ~Mary K (She’d been to nearly EVERY retreat!)

“The purpose of the retreat is experiential. We teachers most often do not have the opportunity to experience first-hand the activities that we ask students to complete. By immersing ourselves in the arts integration activities for hours, we will be better-equipped to remember, deliver, and connect with the lessons that we create for our students. This is common sense!”  ~Jen D.

0802161337a“I left the first day of the retreat feeling loaded. Loaded with positive energy, loaded with great ideas, and loaded with excitement for what the next day would bring.” ~Ashley

“One of the best parts of participating in the teacher art retreat is the renewed excitement I have for getting back in the classroom to initiate all the new learnings I have encountered here.”  ~Dara

“With this being my first retreat, I didn’t know what to expect. I was more than surprised by everyone’s ability, including my own.”  ~Amanda

Over the years we have had all kinds of educators in all facets, levels and years of experience.  New teachers find great ideas, veteran teachers revitalize their curriculum, retired educators come for the overall retreat-feel, administrators are eager to share with their staff, and educators outside of the classroom enjoy the creative atmosphere and common love of learning!

So, what are we waiting for?  Let’s get you signed up!      

Join other Retreaters on Facebook!Don’t forget to check out our Facebook “Teacher Retreaters'” group page where past, present and future retreaters are chatting about ideas and sharing inspiration with one another.  Once you join, you can feel free to read through comments, like a post, and even add your own ideas and thoughts.


This Year’s Retreat Workshops

Old and New School Photography - Take a hands-on journey through time as you explore various ways to create and use photography.

In this FOCUS workshop, we will work our way through three days of related workshops in photography techniques.

Retreaters will learn ways photographers have created photographic images in the 19th, 20th and on into the 21st century.  Step inside a camera; take a cameraless photograph; learn how light works, and how chemical reactions can produce an image right in your classroom without any hazardous materials or expensive equipment.  Bring your digital camera and/or mobile phone to learn how to capture great moments in your classroom, how to edit and use photography apps to enhance your students’ learning.  Plenty of time will be given to explore, create and produce great images. This is a true STEAM experience!

Aileen has organized an amazing experience for you!

Day One Old School Photography topics will include: creating a camera obscure, photography history, how light works, chemical reactions and creating cyanotypes (photograms)

Day Two  New School Photography topics will include: the age of digital imaging, mobile phone photography, app suggestions, using a scanner as a camera (photograms), tips & tricks for mobile phone photography, photo transfers

Day Three Putting it Together topics will include: photo “literacy” and telling a story with photography (and words)

Here’s a bit about Aileen.  First, for the high falutin stuff:

Aileen Maconi has been teaching high school art and photography for over twenty years, the last fourteen at Newburyport HIgh School where she developed the photography and art in technology program. She is a photography and mix media artist. Aileen has also worked as a documentary photographer before becoming a teacher. She has a profound interest in both old and new processes, often mixing 19th and 20th century materials with 21st century technologies. Her work has been exhibited nationally. Aileen has a CFA from the School of the Worcester Art Museum at Clark University, a BFA from Kansas City Art Institute and a MASE from Massachusetts College of Art and Design. She was also the recipient of a Mass Cultural Arts Grant, the Kinnecutt Award and the Special Studies Grant at MIT.

And now for the low-brow… Aileen’s philosophy for successful teaching is its got to be intriguing to the student, and a whole lot of fun too.

Workshop 1 - Vocal Improvisation with Taylor Carroll

Vocal improvisation– Sounds fancy, and maybe a little scary, right? Well, it’s surprisingly easy, and a great way to get your students to express themselves. Retreaters will start simply, by humming a tune. We will then do several engaging games and activities where you will make up increasingly complex tunes, and everyone will go home with some ideas to use in their own classroom from literacy to math integration.

Taylor Carroll has taught K-8 music in Nottingham NH for 16 years. She earned her BA in Music ED from PSU in 2001, and her Master’s degree in Integrated Arts from PSU in 2009. She is also certified in First Steps in Music and Conversational Solfege. In the classroom, students spend a few minutes on vocal improvisation in every class. Taylor wrote songs for several bands throughout high school and college, and when she was in second grade, her song “The Goo Goo Ga Ga Babies” was performed by her entire 2nd-grade class for the school talent show. More recently, her song “I like candy canes” has become a Christmas earworm for whoever hears it. She is married with 3 children, age 7, 9, and 12. She loves to listen to books, sew, and is an orchardist wannabe. Taylor is a “repeater retreater” and is excited to be leading her first workshop at TAR 2018.

Workshop 2 - Ocean Creatures in Recycled Plastic with Brynn Koulovatos

As teachers and artists we have the ability to use our lessons to inspire our students. In this workshop we will each create a work of art that reminds its creator and viewers of the beauty of sea creatures and inspires them to take care of these creatures. Retreaters will make their own creatures 3-dimensional by stuffing them with plastic bags- an irony that is not lost on students or adults alike. This lesson incorporates acrylic paint mixing, blending, the painting process, reinforces drawing skills, and recycles hundreds of plastic bags.  While we learn by the ocean, let’s learn more about how to care for the ocean through art!

Brynn Koulovatos has been a K-8 art teacher at Gilmanton School for the past 5 years. Brynn grew up on the New Hampshire seacoast and is a fine artist whose inspiration comes from nature. Her passion is inspiring her students to love nature and to create change in their communities and their own lives.
Workshop 3 - The Science and Art in Learning

This workshop will provide retreaters with an engaging, useful toolbox for making connections across disciplines while engaging in both movement and fine art activities.  We will take a line for a walk using artist Paul Klee’s philosophies in an interactive experience along with several other activities involving linear, symmetrical and asymmetrical movements which are connected with motion, force, momentum and quantum mechanics.  Additionally, participants get to create a piece of fine art in a hexagram form where the edges don’t touch. A sort of fun puzzle to figure out. Additionally, Linda interfaces a science and art paradigm, with mindfulness concepts from Tai Chi, and Chinese cultural traditions.  This STEAM workshop is informative, inquisitive, and captivating!


Linda Peck, M.Ed. is a unique teacher, Adjunct Professor, and Educational Consultant with an eclectic background that support innovative teaching and learning.  Her combined knowledge, research, experience and interest of the mind body connection through dance, mime, circus skills, and martial arts(soft and hard),  and brain body research, make her programs prescriptively indepth and simultaneously invigorating. She was a professional ballerina interested in preventing pain * mostly foot), studied and performed mime which is science and awareness related as is Tai Chi and other martial arts, and her circus background also connects with a science , art trajectory.  Linda has a passion for teaching through an art lens, similar to Paul Klee, where a familiar piece of knowledge or movement can become another form of learning. Linda is an inquisitive teacher, who sparks, curiosity and inquiry. What else is learning about?

The Teacher Art Retreat is a place where you can relax, create and discover with other like-minded educators.  This is what sets a Teacher Retreat from The Inspired Classroom apart from other professional development you’ve had.

Our goal is for you to interact with a variety of art forms so that you can get ideas to bring back to your teaching.  The workshops are hands-on and accompanied by discussions of how to apply your new knowledge and skills to what you do with students every day.

Everyone will attend all workshops which focus on Arts Integration and STEAM strategies!  No one will miss ANY of the fun!

Lunch will be provided each day and all your materials are included!


Who Attends Teacher Art Retreats

If you are an educator who believes in the arts, including STEAM and SEAL, you should attend the Teacher Art Retreat!

Our professional development is taken by pre K through high school teachers including those who teach special education, art, music, guidance, ELL, technology, ELA, science, and general ed, as well as school nurses, reading specialists, behorialists, speech therapists, those in before and after school care, day care teachers, home school teachers, long term substitutes, veterans and first year teachers.  We’ve even had administrators in attendance!

Time each day will be spent discussing how the things we learn apply to what you do with students every day. Part of the power of the arts is that they transcend subjects and age levels.

Not to mention, YOU will get something personally out of this too…

The arts touch us all!


Our Summer Retreat Location

I’ve been dreaming about having our Summer Teacher Art Retreat at the beach and this year, my dream is coming true!  I’m very excited to be hosting the Retreat at the beautiful Ashworth by the Sea hotel on Hampton Beach in Hampton, New Hampshire.

295 Ocean Blvd, Hampton, NH 03842

I'm coming from far away. Where can I stay?

If you have ever considered a summer get-away with your teacher friends, this might just be what you’re looking for!  A few teachers have even come with their families, spending the day with us and the evenings with family.

Of course, you can stay at the Ashworth by the Sea, where we are having out retreat.  It is across the street from the beach!

Lamie’s Inn is located on route 1 in downtown Hampton, NH and is attached to a local favorite restaurant and bar, The Old Salt.  Please let them know you are reserving your room to attend the Teacher Art Retreat and you will receive 15% off the regular room rate.  Call (603) 926-0330 to make your reservations and go to the Lamie’s Inn website for more information.

If you have any questions or run into any trouble, please send Elizabeth an email.

It is so fun to meet people from various places who share an appreciation in arts in education!  If you are coming from far away, you will certainly enjoy your time in and around Hampton, NH.  It has a nice downtown with many restaurants and shops to explore.   Not to mention, you will be a very short drive to the ocean!

In addition, Hampton is 60 minutes to Boston, Massachusetts and less than 15 minutes to Portsmouth, New Hampshire.  These are both wonderful and exciting cities to visit while you are here!

Don't miss an update!

If you are interested, but still want to know more, be sure to email me, Elizabeth and I will personally make sure you are kept up to date on any new plans surrounding the retreat.  Of course, if you register now, I will automatically email you whenever something new is live!  You can also contact me using this form:

  • Want to get inspiring stories, ideas and lessons sent to your inbox? (Hope so!)

Other Activities

Depending on the interest, we will be organizing other fun activities for after the retreat.  (These are not included in the registration for the retreat and are optional activities.)  Think dinner on Hampton Beach, drumming circles in Boston, dancing to live music in Lowell…  More details will be forthcoming on this.

Registration Information

Registration is now open!

Don’t forget to join our Facebook  Teacher Art Retreaters group!

If you don’t want to register through PayPal, download  our flyer and registration form and send a check to The Inspired Classroom, PO Box 303, Hampton Falls, NH 03844.

We also accept POs.

Come to the retreat with a friend!  Tell your colleagues about this great event and get special pricing!  Start asking around now, so you won’t miss out!


Follow-up Links and Additional Information

Listening to instructions before it’s time to play.

Keep in mind, this retreat is not just about the workshops, it’s about building a community of like-minded passionate teachers.  We will be busy with other activities too: movement, brain gym, collaborative art work, discussions, drumming.  When you register, you will get more info on all this other fun stuff!

For general information about the retreats, visit the Teacher Art Retreats page.

Reflections on the Teacher Art Retreat from a Repeater Retreater  Here is a wonderful reflection from Mary Krikorian.  She has attended nearly every Teacher Art Retreat and in this piece, she captures the essence of what this type of professional development is all about.  Thanks, Mary!

Cancellation Policy

Paid registrants may send a substitute.
If for any reason you can’t attend, 100% of your paid registration will be
refunded when you notify The Inspired Classroom at least 48 hours in advance.
Notifications after this time will be refunded less a $25 service fee.