Professional Learning

Resources That Can Improve Your Teaching (Ep. 310)

In today’s episode, Tim welcomes on AOEU’s Media Content Manager, Lindsey McGinnis, to discuss the plethora of free resources that AOEU offers for teachers. Listen as they discuss current and future YouTube videos, magazine articles that are worth your attention, Instagram Live, and why ice cream and museum visits are always worthwhile. Full Episode Transcript Below.

Resources and Links


Tim: Welcome to Art Ed Radio, the podcast for our teachers. This show is produced by The Art of Education University, and I’m your host, Tim Bogatz.

Way, way back in 2014, I started writing for The Art of Education website, and honestly, 2014 feels like a lifetime ago in terms of what art teaching looked like then, and in terms of the internet and how we used it, and in terms of just what The Art of Education has been doing. Back in the mid-2010s, I feel like art teaching was really starting to open up, and we’re moving out of these solitary islands where we’re just on our own in our schools or on our own in our districts. As it opened up, we were starting to find other teachers out there. Okay?

Blogs were a big thing. Okay? Some art teachers were connecting on Twitter. A lot more art teachers were connecting on Pinterest and Facebook, and some people were on Instagram. Not nearly as many as they’re on there now when it comes to art teaching, but I loved all of these connections because it made sharing notes, and looking at ideas, and talking about lesson plans so easy. Okay? We are able to converse with other art teachers. We’re able to have conversations, and learn from each other, and just get validation that what we were doing was successful.

Those connections have continued on. They continued to grow. They continued to help art teachers get better at what they do. For me, personally, The Art of Ed has been a huge part of that. From starting out with my writing back then turning into the AOE live show that we did, turning into this podcast, I’ve been lucky enough to have so many opportunities to make those connections with art teachers all over the country and all over the world.

Even though AOE has grown tremendously, it’s now AOEU. It’s become a university, and we’re offering PD through PRO, curriculum through FLEX, but there’s a lot of content. There’s a lot of stuff on the website that is still free, that is still accessible to everyone, and all of that helps us make those connections that are so important. Even after all of these years and all of the growth here at AOEU, there’s still that throughline of free stuff that you can find every single day. Not only this podcast and Candido’s Everyday Art Room Podcast, but articles, and free resources, and content, and discussions on social media, and videos on YouTube, and so much more.

Heading up a lot of the development of all of those things is our media content manager, Lindsey McGinnis, who is here today and just about ready to come on. There are a ton of exciting things happening in her world. So I wanted to take some time today to talk through a lot of what’s being published and what’s being developed at AOEU. So let me bring her on now.

All right. Lindsey McGinnis is joining me now. Lindsey, how are you?

Lindsey: I’m doing really well. Glad to be here.

Tim: Well, I’m glad to have you here. I feel like we’ve been working together for a while now, and I somehow have never had you on the podcast. So I’m glad you’re here. Thanks for coming, and we have lots of exciting stuff to talk about. Before we do that though, I would love to just let everybody listening know a little bit about you. So can you introduce yourself? Maybe just tell us a little bit about what you did as a teacher, a little bit about your teaching career, and now, just what your role is at a AOEU?

Lindsey: Sure, sure. So I’m Lindsey McGinnis. Glad to be here. I am currently the media content manager for AOEU, which means I oversee the online magazine, YouTube, and a little bit of Instagram, and we’ll talk about that later. But before this position, I taught high school for 12 years, and I taught a wide range of classes. So I’ve taught computer graphics with computers and without computers. I’ve got foundations classes. I’ve taught ceramics, all levels of ceramics, but my favorite courses to teach were for IB Art. For those of you unfamiliar, that stands for International Baccalaureate, and I taught, excuse me, I taught art history for the sophomores, and I taught studio courses for the juniors and seniors. I’ve also done sponsoring National Art Honor Society, all other clubs, curriculum writing, what have you. So done a lot of different things.

Tim: Awesome.

Lindsey: Yep.

Tim: Nice. So I feel like we can do an entire podcast on teaching computer graphics without computers. So we’ll have to learn more about that later, but can you just share a little bit more about, I guess, what a media content manager does? What is your role? Can you talk about what you do on an everyday basis?

Lindsey: Yeah. Sure. So the job is to oversee the online magazine, YouTube, and a little bit of Instagram, and let’s start with the magazine. So I work with a great team of writers, and all of the writers are practicing art teachers in the classroom, which is really, really important. I work with them to curate article ideas and content to bring to all of you who are listening to help you out in the classroom. I also provide training to writers to improve their writing skills, and I also edit all of the articles before they go to copy editing. So all of our articles go through at least two rounds of editing, which is important to know. We want to put out as high of quality writing as possible so that you can be as equipped as possible in your classrooms. So that’s what we do with the magazine. I also work with Sarah Krajewski with Instagram Live. She does a fabulous job. I think we’ll talk a little bit more about that later. So I’m going to skip over that for now.

Tim: Yeah, yeah. Okay.

Lindsey: I also get to work with amazing content creators for YouTube as well, and that is a ton of fun. I’ve been able to meet just so many art teachers just across the world and across the country. I get to scope out teachers who I think would be a great fit for video and YouTube, and work with them to also create content and ideas for series and just individual episodes as well. I get to work with the video process from ideation and development all the way through production and then post, post-production.

Tim: Okay. Very cool. Yeah. Like you mentioned, I do want to talk about instagram Live. I also want to talk about YouTube for a bit, but before we get there, do you have any good recommendations for articles that people can read? Do you have, just off the top of your head, a couple articles that you think are really good ones that have come out recently that you think people should pay attention to or go read?

Lindsey: Yes. Of course. I mean, there have been so many really good ones. It was hard to narrow it down to just a couple, but I’ll try to pick my favorites.

Tim: Okay.

Lindsey: So a recent one we did was 10 Creative and Fun Ideas to Fuel Your Artistic Soul, and this was based on our Art Teacher Appreciation Giveaway that we did on Instagram a few months ago.

Tim: Yes, yes.

Lindsey: It was a way that we could give back to teachers for working really hard this year and helping our young artists to grow in just a crazy, crazy time. We asked the question, “What would you do to fuel your artistic soul?” We got a ton of really great responses, and we share them in this article. So if you’re looking for new ways to recharge and get excited about art and art making, I would highly recommend that you check out this article. My favorite submission to this was someone who said that they deserve a lot of ice cream, and I was like, “Yeah.” That’s what I would’ve put too.

Tim: Yeah. Right.

Lindsey: But there are also more practical things in there, like doing things with your family, or getting museum memberships, or hosting a crafternoon with some friends. So some really great ideas in there, if you’re looking. Another article that we put out was by Shannon Brinkley, and it’s called Five Points of Discovery to Unpack When You Teach IB Visual Arts. Shannon is an adjunct faculty for some of our graduate courses, and she’s wonderful.

Lindsey: This is a great article if you’re interested in learning about IB Art, or if you’re new to teaching IB Art and are a little bit lost, it’s a great overview of the program, and it includes a handy download that you can bookmark or print out and post in your classroom, or even give to your students with all of the various assessment components and requirements. It’s also just a great article in general if you teach any advanced courses. A lot of transferable strategies and skills in there. Another article along the same lines is How to Easily Break Down AP Art and Design Portfolios. That was written by Janet Taylor.

Tim: Oh, yeah. Janet is on. Yeah.

Lindsey: She’s been on here a lot talking about AP Art and new teachers recently.

Tim: Yes.

Lindsey: Super knowledgeable. So it’s very similar to the IP article. It’s an overview of AP, and it also has a little handy download in there with all of the requirements and assessment components. So very helpful as well.

Tim: Yeah. That’s awesome. I was going to say I want to make a couple of points.

Lindsey: Sure.

Tim: First of all, ice cream is always worthwhile. No, I love the idea of the museum membership too because it was my birthday not too long ago, and I spent the day going to the Joslyn Art Museum here in Omaha, and then getting ice cream afterwards. You talk about like feeding your artistic soul. That was great for me. I felt so much better after that. So it was wonderful. Then, second was I love Shannon’s article, and I’m really hoping to have her on the podcast sometime in the future to talk about IB Art a little bit more. So that should be exciting. Did you have more? Did I interrupt you? Did you have anything else you wanted to share?

Lindsey: I always have more articles to share.

Tim: Okay. Yes, yes. Go. Go for it.

Lindsey: So another really good one is What Does Unpacking the National Core Arts Standards Look Like, and I know for a lot of teachers, especially new teachers, the standards can be very overwhelming. This one was written by Jessica Madenford, and she was a guest podcast host, I believe.

Tim: Yeah, with Everyday Art Room back in December.

Lindsey: Yes.

Tim: She did a couple of episodes for us. She was awesome.

Lindsey: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yes. She’s also on our writing team, and she, in this article, really broke the standards down and made them way less confusing, explained each of the four standards. So creating, presenting, responding, and connecting. There’s a download in there as well with main ideas for each one, so also very helpful.

Tim: Very cool.

Lindsey: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Tim: All right. Awesome. No, thank you for all those suggestions. I think that will be great for people who are looking for ideas. Yeah. Just a lot of varying concepts there, a lot of things for people to dive into. Okay. So we also need to talk about YouTube as we mentioned. You really upped the game. You really enhanced what AOEU is doing on YouTube. But before we talk about what AOEU has been doing, can you tell us about what you’ve done in the past? Can you tell us about just your experiences as a content creator and what you have done or I guess what you still do on YouTube?

Lindsey: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Sure. Reluctantly, I’ll share that because I don’t like talking about my personal YouTube channel too much.

Tim: Fair, fair.

Lindsey: But I do have a personal YouTube channel, and I started it several years ago. It’s under a different name. It’s under the name, Lindsey Domer, if you want to check it out, but I share my home renovation and DIY projects on there, and all of my projects are on a budget because I started this when I was a teacher and teacher budget is not that…

Tim: Yeah. Yep.

Lindsey: Teacher salary is not that great, and I have shared projects of, I think, five homes on that channel at this point. So a lot of room makeovers, and I started it because it was a fun creative outlet for me that wasn’t fine art because I was sick of drawing and painting all day, and I didn’t want to go home and draw and paint. So I wanted to do something totally different, but still tap into my art skills and creativity. So that’s how that started. But right now in my channel, we’re renovating a 100-year-old Dutch colonial home. So it’s a whole new adventure, and we’re doing it as a family. So it’s just a fun way to build memories, collect them, and go back, and re-watch, and remember them.

Tim: Oh, that’s awesome. Well, thank you for sharing even if you had to do it reluctantly. I think what you do on there is really, really cool.

Lindsey: Thank you.

Tim: So I think our teachers can appreciate it as well. So, hopefully, we’ll get a few people to check that out, but let’s talk about the AOEU version of YouTube. I try and stay away from saying AOEU YouTube because it’s just too many vowel sounds at once. It’s difficult.

Lindsey: Mouthful.

Tim: Yeah. Like I said, you’ve done some really cool things. So can you tell us about the new series, the new projects that you’ve put together in the past few months? I guess if there’s anything new coming that we need to know about, can you share about that as well?

Lindsey: Oh, yes. There’s definitely some new stuff coming that is very exciting, but I’ll start off with what we already did. So last fall, we did too many series as I was getting my feet under me and figuring out procedures for YouTube. So we started with 1-2-3 A-R-T with Lindsey Moss, who’s also been on this podcast a lot.

Tim: Yes.

Lindsey: It was a very much needed series about how to teach our youngest artists. It focused on kindergarten, but it could be transferred to first and second grade too after a couple of years of online learning and isolation. So that was a really packed series, and Lindsey did a fantastic job with some innovative strategies in there. The other series we did last fall was First-Year Art Teacher’s Guide with Brittney Witt, and she was so fun to work with. She’s super bubbly. It’s her second year teaching this year. So she had a ton of tips for new teachers that she just learned the year before that she wanted to share about navigating and surviving the first few years of teaching with the twist of COVID and doing virtual teaching or hybrid teaching and not knowing all of your coworkers, not knowing all of your students, or even not even being in your classroom your first year of teaching, which is so hard for me to wrap my mind around.

Tim: Right, right.

Lindsey: So we compiled a downloadable guide to go with that YouTube series, and it was also packed with resources. You can still download that, and it’s broken down by grade level. So if you’re an elementary, middle, or high school teacher, there are different sections of that packet that you can go to with resources just for you. So that is a great resource to have.

Tim: Yeah. That’s awesome. We’ve done all of those first year teacher podcasts on here. I keep mentioning that resource because it is so valuable. There are so many great things in there. So first year teachers, if you haven’t downloaded that yet, please go do it. Okay. Sorry though. You have other things to talk about that are also exciting. So go ahead.

Lindsey: Yes.

Tim: Go on.

Lindsey: Yeah. So those are the two series we have already done, and we have two series coming up, which I am very, very psyched about. So the first one is Art Room Hacks, and we have three art teachers who are hosting that series. We have Laura Gardner, and she represents our elementary art teachers. We have Andrea Wlodarczyk, who teaches middle school, and she’s also on our writing team. We have Matt Young who has been, I think, in as a NOW Conference presenter.

Tim: Yeah. He’s been at NOW multiple times.

Lindsey: Yes, and he teaches high school and does a lot with 3D art. But in this series, they bring tons of hacks to save you time, and sanity, and money to make your teaching life in the art room so much easier. They cover so many different topics from organization to storage, to exhibiting work, and so much more. If you want a sneak preview of what that series looks like and what some of the hacks are, they all appeared on IG Live with Sarah a few weeks ago. So you can find that on Instagram, and it’s also on YouTube as well. Right now, the series is scheduled to come out in April.

Tim: All right. Cool, cool. Anything else for YouTube before we move on to Instagram Live?

Lindsey: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Tim: Okay. Go.

Lindsey: I saved my favorite for last, and that is A Day in the Life of an Art Teacher. My favorite project that we’re working on right now. So this, the plan is for it to be an ongoing series this year. We have a bunch of different art teachers lined up to make episodes so far, and it’s a way to share the very real and raw wins and challenges that we face every single day in the art room. It’s going to be a very relatable series. You’re going to be able to get a glimpse into what other art teachers, classrooms, or carts, or teaching situations look like, whether that is in-person, hybrid, or teaching from home. It’s going to be also packed with tips, and tricks, and strategies along the way.

Lindsey: I know like when I was teaching in the classroom, the things that I learned that work the best and the way that I learn the most was just by popping into other art teachers’ rooms, and just watching them, and then seeing what I could pull back into my own classroom. That’s how I learned, and I just think that this is going to be a great way, a great opportunity for other art teachers who may be the only art teacher in their school to pop into other art teachers’ classrooms virtually and get a glimpse. So I’m very excited, and the trailer and episodes will be coming out after Art Room Hacks.

Tim: Yeah. That’s awesome. I got to see a sneak preview of Nic Hahn’s day in the life, and it was spectacular. I’m so excited to see all of these, and it’s also fun because in the intro to this episode, I talked about just how we love to make connections, especially for those art teachers who are teaching all by themselves. So, like you said, when you said, “Get a glimpse into other people’s classroom,” you can learn so much, and it’s so valuable to be able to do that. So I think that series is going to be great, so.

Lindsey: Yeah.

Tim: Okay. Let’s finish up here by talking about Instagram Live because we promised we are going to do that.

Lindsey: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Tim: So just another thing that is under your umbrella. Like you said, you work with Sarah Krajewski, who has been an incredible host for Instagram Live. She does such an awesome job. She’s been doing it for a long time, just great interviews with artists, great interviews with art teachers. But just a week or two ago, she was doing some art making as a change of pace, and it seemed like that was really, really well-received.

Lindsey: Yes.

Tim: So I guess my question is like, what was the impetus for trying something different in that Instagram Live space, and is that something that we can or should expect more of moving forward there?

Lindsey: Absolutely. So we are doing… I say we. It’s all Sarah, but we are doing exciting things over on IG Live. It was already an amazing show. Sarah has been able, like you said, to get such a wide range of art teachers and artists to be featured on the show, but we’re brainstorming ways to make it even better moving forward and just a little more applicable for art teachers. So, like you said, Sarah recently did a Make Art With Me session on IG Live, and I thought it went really well, and it was really well-received, like you said. She made intuitive abstract art for about 30 minutes, but I could have probably watched her for two hours.

Tim: Yes. Same, same.

Lindsey: She invited us to make art with her, and I loved how art teachers were making art with her, and commenting, and asking questions, and then taking photos of their art, and posting, and tagging The Art of Ed on Instagram. It was a lot of fun, but through her Make Art With Me, she shared art she made. She shared her process. She shared some of her favorite art supplies, which was really neat, and she gave a lot of tips, a lot of encouragement along the way, and a lot of fun sound effects, which I loved as well.

We just know that this school year has been extra hard on art teachers, and we wanted to provide a space where you can carve out 20-ish minutes every other week just to make art for you for fun and for self-care. At the end of the day, we are art teachers, and it’s just really important that we get back to art making, even if we’re not making a fully finished work of art that we’re going to exhibit, but just to dabble in something new, have fun, get excited, get passionate about what we teach, and bring that back into our classrooms. So, moving forward, we would love to continue the Make Art With Me theme both with Sarah and with other guest art teachers and artists as well.

Tim: Oh, that’s awesome. I’m looking forward to seeing that, doing that, participating with that.

Lindsey: Yes.

Tim: I think that will be really good for everyone. So, Lindsey, thank you so much for your time. I love talking to you. I love hearing about everything that’s going on behind the scenes, everything else that’s going to be coming out soon. I think that gives everybody some stuff to look forward to. So thanks for taking the time and thanks for sharing all that with us today.

Lindsey: Yeah. Thanks for having me.

Tim: Lindsey gave us a plethora of ideas for things that you can check out, whether that’s one of the mini articles she mentioned that you want to read or one of the episodes on YouTube you want to watch. Maybe you even want to watch the entire series, or if nothing else, you maybe just want to tune in and make some art along with everyone else during the next Instagram Live. But the point is that you have the opportunity to make those connections that I talked so much about in the beginning and that Lindsay mentioned toward the end of the interview.

You can make connections with other art teachers, and you have the opportunity to learn, the opportunity to bring something new into your classroom, and sometimes the opportunity just to do something for yourself, which can be incredibly valuable as well. I would encourage you to take just a minute after you watch, or read, or do whatever to take that connection up just a little bit and find whoever wrote the article, or made the video, or even just posted something on social media that you liked.

Hey, leave them a comment, send them an email, ask them a question, or anything along those lines, and tell them how you appreciate what they created, or tell them how you’re going to use it with their kids, or ask a question that you’re wondering about, or even just say thank you. We’re all better as teachers when we are in this together. Every connection we make can bring us closer. So go watch, go read, or even just go scroll through social media. But while you are doing that, try to see where you can make that connection, and then do it.

Art Ed Radio is produced by The Art of Education University with audio engineering from Michael Crocker. Thank you as always for listening, and we’ll talk to you again next week.

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.