I have over eighteen years of teaching experience! My students inspire me. Their energy and enthusiasm for learning makes my role as a teacher more extraordinary than I could have ever imagined.
My goal as an instructor is to provide my students with basic art/design tools and fundamentals while encouraging them to make their own decisions and follow their own path. I believe that there are no right or wrong answers and that there are multiple solutions to any given problem. I encourage them to develop their own individual aesthetic sense while creating their own process and solutions to solving creative problems.
We live in a visual world and are constantly bombarded by imagery from nature and man-made images (signage, advertisements, video, internet, posters and more). I help students to understand these images and to create their own visual messages.
Art is generally one of a kind and personal. Design is mass-produced and created for a client or service. In order to successfully complete a design problem I encourage my students to work through a process towards a user-centered solution. I believe that developing a "process" is vital to the success of the designer. I encourage this process to evolve through specific assignments, while encouraging them to keep a sketchbook journal.
I encourage my students to take advantage of the vast variety of learning experiences and opportunities that are available to them. I try to teach them how to "learn how to learn" and instill in them the belief that learning is a lifelong endeavor. I encourage them to look at the "big picture" and to observe everything from historical, social, political, and artistic and design references to help them formulate ideas and inspirations for their work. I hope to encourage them to remember that their work is potentially part of something bigger and that they need to think about how it will affect and potentially fit into the greater world in which we live in.
For over a year now I have been formally incorporating UDL (Universal Design for Learning) into my classroom. “Universal design for learning (UDL) is a framework to improve and optimize teaching and learning for all people based on scientific insights into how humans learn.” We all learn in different ways. Some of us learn through visuals, other through written instructions, some through oral instructions. I implemented UDL into my classrooms through the use of oral instructions, written instruction on the white board, videos, visual posters, illustrated books, visual handouts with written instructions and the option for students to use their personal Ipads. Creating a variety of options for my students to understand instructions and to create art and design work has helped me to become a better teacher.