Art Ed Now Recap (Ep. 179)

The 2019 Summer Art Ed Now conference is in the books, and Tim is here with Lindsey Moss and Abby Schukei break it all down! Listen as they discuss their highlights from the conference, their admiration for Ron Clark, and their a-ha moments and takeaways from the presenters.  Full episode transcript below.

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Tim: Welcome to Art Ed Radio, the podcast for art teachers. This show is produced by the Art of Education University, and I’m your host Tim Bogatz. All right, I’m here with Lindsey Moss, and Abby Schukei at AOEU headquarters. Would you all like to say, “Hi”?

Lindsey: Hi everybody.

Abby: Hello!

Tim: So we just finished the Art Ed Now 2019 Summer Conference, it was amazing. There are some awesome highlights as there always are. And yeah, we’re just kind of taking things down, finishing up with everything that we’ve done. And it’s always just a great feeling to get through a conference, but kind of a strange feeling at the same time. Because we’ve been working on this for the past six months, and all of a sudden it’s done in a day. Lindsey, you compared to what, a wedding? Earlier.

Lindsey: It’s like… Yeah, it’s like putting on a wedding. Every six months.

Tim: So, but I think it was successful, we’ve had a ton of positive feedback throughout the day. In the chat, in the Q & A with presenters, on social media. And I feel really good about what we were able to put together. But Abby, if I can just ask you I guess, because you were pretty involved in social media, seeing what everybody is feeling. What were your overall thoughts on the conference, and what were people saying about it?

Abby: Everyone was just so engaged in all the different art making activities that were available. And it was so fun to see everybody sharing, whether it be on Instagram or Twitter, or whatever. It was just so fun to be able to see art teachers connect from everywhere. And everyone was active on there, and so we really appreciate you sharing what you’re doing during the day because it gives us a real glimpse at what you’re taking from the conference.

Tim: Mm-hmm (affirmative). And you know, just thinking about where people are watching from. You know, we talk about this being like a global conference, and it’s amazing because we had what? People from Thailand, we had people watching from American Samoa, like just all over the place, and so that’s really cool to see. Lindsey, you were doing the chat a lot, can you tell us kind of what discussion was like on there? What you guys were talking about throughout the day?

Lindsey: Sure. I just love the chat because it’s a good chance for people to expand on what they’re hearing, and share the ideas it sparks in their own mind. So they can share it with other people, and what’s been working for them in the classroom. So it’s a neat place to kind of look back and see a deeper dive of how people were digesting it, and how they were going to apply it to their own teaching situation. So the chat was really good today.

Tim: Yeah, and I love seeing people share ideas on there. Like, I don’t jump into the chat a lot, but I read most of it, kind of in between presentations. But yeah, I love when people you know, are watching presentations and say, “Oh, I also do this.” Or, you know, “I love to do it this way in my classroom.” Like you said, dive deeper and just kind of share some ideas there.

But I also wanted to ask you both about your favorite returning presenter? We had a few like Rachel Albert was back, Lena Rodriguez, Matt and Craig, Debbie West, Amber Kane. Lindsey, I’ll ask you first, who did you really like, and why?

Lindsey: That’s so hard, because I feel like all these people are returning for a reason.

Tim: Yes. Yes.

Lindsey: They’re all so talented, they have such good ideas. But I personally was really inspired by Abby this time around.

Abby: Thank you!

Lindsey: You’re welcome friend!

Abby: I didn’t pay her to say that.

Lindsey: I feel like the lessons for positivity and kindness are so needed right now, and as soon as that Rubik’s Cube lesson came up, the chat started lighting up. Everybody was wanting to talk about that, and it seems like such a cool idea for the fall. So, Abby for sure.

Tim: That’s awesome. Now, Abby did you want to return the favor and say Lindsey was your favorite?

Lindsey: No pressure. No pressure.

Abby: Although I really loved Lindsey’s idea, sorry no. No, but one of the presentations I really enjoyed was Amber Kane’s. And one of the reason for that, especially teaching secondary students, she talked a lot about how to empower your students, and really practical ways to get them to take ownership in what they’re doing. Which is something that we see all the time, especially at the secondary level of students, you know not taking… They’re not accountable for themselves, it’s you know an issue with… It’s their parent’s fault, it’s your fault, but they are not willing to take the blame for themselves. And so she provided some really awesome strategies that went along with that.

Tim: Yeah, that’s really cool. God, I had… Can I? I was going to cheat and say two, I’m going to cheat and say three actually.

Abby: That’s not fair, you didn’t give us that option!

Lindsey: What?

Tim: I’m sorry.

Lindsey: I want a redo.

Tim: I thought Nic Hahn and Billy Kheel started off the conference amazingly well, just a great idea.

Lindsey: That was good.

Tim: I love Lena Rodriguez, talking about portfolios, because I feel like there’s just not a lot of discussion. Now, just coming from a high school perspective, I love people who are talking about things like portfolios, and AP art. Just because I feel like those don’t get enough attention. Then I thought Amanda O’Shaughnessy was great, with her clay looms. Like, just taking a new look at ceramics I think we called it, and it was just an amazing presentation. And she had such a great idea, it was so much fun, so I really liked that.

Now, what about new faces? Was there anybody that we haven’t seen before who really stood out to you? Anybody who really shined, Lindsey?

Lindsey: I could listen to Caitlyn Thompson talk all day long.

Tim: Yes.

Lindsey: The way she explained things, that you just can’t help but watch and listen to her. When she picked up the giant jug of Mod Podge with such intensity I was like, “I know I’m going to love this.” And then we got into her mind palace, and I have to say that I think was one of the most fun, hands-on art making things. You know, we were busy conference day, but as a group I know you already shared that we did it last night. But I loved her project.

Tim: Yeah, being able to make that paper pottery is so much fun. You know, I want to do it with my own kids at home, and I want to dive into like the magazine pottery that she has in the After Pass too, I think there is so much cool stuff there.

Lindsey: I think too, sometimes like new and innovative ideas can sometimes be cost-prohibitive. And I love that this is like, any school you can do this, it doesn’t matter what your budget is.

Tim: Yeah, newspaper and watered down glue. And like, you can do this.

Lindsey: You’re good to go, yeah.

Abby: Now, just for the sake of keeping it real. So we all did do this activity together, and you know not all of us doing the activity were… The paper pottery are art teachers. But you know obviously I’m an art teacher, and mine was terrible. Like, I did not do it right, and my problem was my paper strips were not all even which made a big difference. But I totally failed. But it was still fun.

Tim: Right. But-

Abby: But I learned something for when I’m going to do it with my students.

Tim: I was going to say.

Lindsey: There you go.

Tim: As we always talk about as art teachers, you learn something from failure and you’re going to teach it better because of that now.

Abby: I was actually a terrible student and like, threw mine on the floor. So, Caitlyn if you’re listening, I needed your help.

Tim: All right, Abby who was your favorite new presenter?

Abby: So let’s talk about something else that I really don’t like.

Tim: Yeah?

Abby: Or fail at sometimes. And for me that is teaching colored pencil, I don’t enjoy that.

Tim: Oh, yes.

Lindsey: Oh.

Abby: So Jenn Russell was my girl today, sharing her great ideas for getting quality colored pencils with your students. And her colored pencil chart is going to be super awesome to use, and I know she has a pro pack coming out, and I’m going to need to watch that like a million times because this ten minute presentation just wasn’t enough for me. So that was super awesome.

Tim: Yeah, that’s a good start. Yeah, I loved seeing her presentation, her techniques. Because I think she and I teach very similarly, and so I keep watching her I’m like, “Yes! That’s how I do it, but you’re even better.” And so there’s so much to learn there. And I love hearing from her students as well, like getting those little clips of the kids talking about how they use colored pencil, I thought that was cool.

Tim: My favorite new one maybe was Melinda Moen.

Abby: Oh, yeah.

Tim: She had that hilarious start to her presentation.

Lindsey: Yeah.

Tim: Which was great. But I just appreciate the fact that she is taking on this huge idea of like, “How do we teach process?” You know, because I reached out to her about doing a presentation, she has so many cool things on Instagram. And she’s like, “I think I want to teach about art making processes.” I’m like, “Okay. If you want to take on like, the biggest thing with your very first presentation.” I really admire that, and I loved everything that she had to say. So that was really cool.

Also it seemed to me like Ron Clark was incredibly popular. Like, one of the most keynotes we’ve had. Was that the impression that you got? And also, you know what did you think about his presentation yourself?

Lindsey: Yeah, that’s kind of what the chat indicated. People were really excited, and I think it’s because teaching art is such a wonderful job and it’s so rewarding, but it also is like… It’s difficult, right?

Tim: Yes.

Lindsey: And you’ve got to get pumped up for the fall, and I don’t think anybody pumps up like Ron Clark. I wish I had half of his energy, but I think that would be five cups of coffee for me. I loved his presentation, and I feel like that’s one to kind of store away and re-watch on days where you need an extra boost. So I was a fan.

Tim: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.

Abby: Yeah. You know, my presentation was right after Ron Clark, so I know that everyone was actually here for me. So, thank you.

Tim: Ron Clark was just your opening actually?

Abby: Yes, he was. He was. But first off, I would just like to say that I wish I had rad dance moves like Ron Clark.

Tim: Yes.

Abby: I’m about… Like, honestly I think I’m going to have like a walk-up song every day.

Tim: Oh, that’s good.

Abby: Yeah. I’m going to work on this. I’ll get back to you all on this, but this is going to happen.

Lindsey: I like that.

Abby: Yeah. I just, you know set the… I mean, dancing? I think it would just be fun.

Tim: Yeah. Well I feel like, you know everybody needs the red button in the classroom to just, you know turn it into the dance club. And DJ, like we can’t go wrong with that, right?

Abby: Yeah, and I don’t really have the light system, really. But I could just like flip the switch up and down like a strobe light. Do you think that could work?

Tim: You know, I think it would. But you know, even if you don’t want to do that just a walk-up song is probably-

Abby: We could call it Club Schukei?

Tim: Yeah.

Abby: Okay, I’m going to get back to you on that. But no, in all seriousness, like yes he was funny and engaging. But I think the biggest thing that really resonated with art teachers is just that he’s an advocate for all educators, and creativity in general. And so he’s a voice for all of us, and he was just really empowering. And I feel like after watching his presentation teachers might be able to go back to their administration, or maybe be fueled with a little bit of fire behind them to really advocate and stand up for who they are as a teacher. So I think that was one of the cool things.

Tim: Yeah, I think that is really cool. And you know, just talking about him advocating for the arts, just being able to see inside the Ron Clark Academy, and see what’s there on the walls. The way the classrooms are designed, they’re so colorful, they’re so artistic. And it was really, really inspiring.

Lindsey: I want a slide.

Tim: I know, I do too. I want to use the slide, right?

Abby: Yeah, I need a dance club. I need a slide. I need it to snow inside my classroom. I need it to do everything. If you’re listening and you can fund my projects, please come to my classroom!

Tim: But yeah, like you said Abby, I think he’s like equal parts hilarious and inspirational. And so it’s really fun to listen to him, you know just because you’re entertained, but then as you start to listen to him a little more, you know he has some really profound things to say. And it is just… I don’t know, it was an inspiring 17 minutes –

Abby: Yeah, and we didn’t even… Right now, we didn’t even mention the fact that he was on Survivor. And like, I don’t really watch Survivor, but can I try out for the show? Like, I’m not sure how it works, but I just basically want to be Ron Clark.

Tim: Nice. You can grow up to be Ron Clark.

Abby: Oh, good.

Tim: All right, and then I guess to kind of wrap things up. What do you think we need to see more of next time around? Like, is there anything out there like topics that we still need to cover, anything you think we need to talk about more as we move toward the Winter 2020 Conference?

Lindsey: I felt like there was a cool mix of sort of non-traditional materials this time. Like there was jewelry making, there was cartooning, there was this making vessels out of newspaper. And I loved that, because you know you’re always looking for fresh stuff to hook your kids, so I’d like to see even more of those non-traditional materials in the winter.

Abby: Yeah, and coming from someone who is constantly doing new things in their classroom, I can really… And I’m a big tech person, I can really get wrapped up in like, “What’s the newest innovative thing out there?” And so yes it’s awesome to have some of those things, but just like the simple ideas of using India ink to create lines, and just things like that are also nice. Because you’re like, “Wow. It doesn’t have to be this hard.” But they’re still new ideas.

Tim: Yeah, just that simple twist on traditional things I think can be really worthwhile. So I’ll just put the call out there right now, like we did at the end of the conference. If you have any great ideas, if you’re listening to this, and you want to apply to present I would love to get more applications in. Especially if you have a great idea. So you can go to, and then there’s a about us section, and a little tab that says, “Work With Us.” And you can apply there, and that would be awesome. So anyway, Lindsey, Abby, thank you so much for hanging out for a little bit. And all of your help today with the conference, and chatting a little bit on the podcast here. So, thank you.

Lindsey: You’re welcome. This was fun.

Abby: Yeah, thanks for having us.

Tim: All right, a big thank you to everyone who participated in putting on the conference. Big thank you to the presenters, and of course everyone who attended. This was our biggest conference ever, I love saying that so you’ll probably just hear me repeating it over and over. But you know, I just… I love the community that comes with this conference. Like, the chat during the conference of course, but also the discussions that are taking place on social media, on our Art Ed Now Attendees Facebook page. You know that just kind of keep going after the conference is over.

So anyway, if you went to the conference make sure you check out the After Pass, if there’s anything you need to see again. You can also sign up for the Winter Conference, we have a discount going for another week and a half I think, through August 8th. Make sure you register for winter 2020, get your Swag Box and make sure you’re going to have another amazing day of PD in February. But I hope we will see you there, and I’m going to do everything I can to make sure it is another amazing experience.

Art Ed Radio was produced by the Art of Education University, with audio engineering by Michael Crocker. Thank you for listening, thank you for coming to the conference. I hope it was a worthwhile day of PD for you, and we will talk to you soon.

Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.