Art Teacher Talk

Art Workshops for Educators Middle and High School Art

The Importance of Relevant Art PD

Art Workshops that provide relevant training for educators are an absolute must. Especially in the post-pandemic era. More than ever before, people are being placed in teaching positions that they are not equipped for – and not just Art Teachers. It’s happening across the board. These teachers need support in the form of training in their field of study, as many of them have little to none.

I have received countless emails from teachers expressing thanks for not only the workshop content, but the practical resources as well. I’m talking about the basics – how to TEACH Drawing, Painting, Colored Pencil, AP®Studio Art, Basic Classroom Management, Behavior Management, etc…it’s all here.

Now, for the Venting…

August comes and the Educator District-wide PD begins…

What? Seriously?

You mean the brain cell sucking vortex of meetings that rob us of our precious planning time on a felony-style level?

“C’mon, Tiff, tell us how you really feel.”

It has always amazed me that we return to school and sit through endless hours of meetings, training and video tutorials that have absolutely nothing to do with our role as Art Educators. I get it,  we need to know the administrative changes, the district roll-outs, payroll, healthcare, blah blah blah. Send me a packet in the mail. I’m an adult. I’ll look through it on a need-to-know basis. In the meantime, schedule me a PD facilitator with relevant art related content. 

Here’s how I discovered just how badly Art Educators long for solid, relevant PD with practical resources. 

Enter the amazing Art Educator, Shand Stamper. 

It’s Spring, 2021. 

Shand types a post on Facebook inquiring about a summer colored pencil workshop so she can hone her skills. 

She types one simple question. “Does anyone know where I can find a workshop to grow my colored pencil skills?” Educators began to tag me and respond with, “See if Tiffany Fox is offering anything. Her kids do great colored pencil work.” Flattery aside, I was so honored by this response.

Long story short, I decided to offer the course that summer. Just the basics of teaching colored pencil. I honestly thought it would be me and 20 participants on a Zoom call. 

Over 300 educators signed up. For real. 

The Light Bulb Moment

As the art workshops began to sell out, I thought, “There is obviously a need here, and I know I can help.”For those of you who have taken my workshops, you know that my passion is watching people learn and be successful, no matter who they are or what they are learning. I simply LOVE to teach. 

I have also undergone a major life and career change in the last three months. My husband and I relocated to South Carolina to be close to my daughter and her new husband (so I can be a Gigi to beautiful grand babies). I am now officially a full-time Art Curriculum Designer. It’s marvelous and yet I was terrified to leave the teaching component behind. If you teach high school, you know how precious these kids are. They are right on the verge of adulthood and we are privileged to be a part of their journey. It was the most difficult decision I have ever made.

As soon as we got here in June I decided to jump in and offer more workshops, not only to get my “teaching fix” but as the feedback from last summer was simply, “We want MORE!”

Based on last year’s requests, this summer I added several workshops. Topics ranging from Classroom Management, Teaching Acrylic Painting, Teaching Portraiture, White Colored Pencil High Contrast Drawing, AP Studio Art and Beginner Drawing – oh, and more Colored Pencil 101 and Skin Tones too. 

We had a blast. Again, I had the privilege to work with over 300 educators, and the sentiment was the same across the board. “This is so relevant and I can take these resources back to my room and implement them immediately.”

As the art workshops wrapped up and every single seat sold out, the new request was for recorded versions with the resources included. People wanted a more flexible option. As we all know, summer scheduling is tough trying to jam all the things into our plan in a short two months. 

The Action

Next step – set up a Thinkific site and upload the workshops. No easy feat for an old tech dog like myself, lolol. But I did it. My educators loved the digital course option. They could watch the live recording and examine the resources on their own time.

I say all of the above to say this…if you are looking for instruction on HOW to teach certain art concepts and media techniques, or if you need a refresher or a reboot (actual feedback, “Thanks so much for the classroom management reboot”), I got you.

If you got hired to teach Art and you are not an Art Teacher by trade, I got you.

Are you a new or veteran teacher and no one ever taught you HOW to teach certain media or coursework – colored pencil, or acrylic painting, or drawing fundamentals, or AP Studio Art – I got you.

If you are looking for instruction on teaching students how to draw or how to create a portrait, I got you.

Basically, I got you.

Super Spoiler Alert…Art Educators are getting these online courses paid for and earning CEUs in the process.

Do some investigating…

My advice is to check with your Principal, your Bookkeeper (who we all know if the main cog in the administrative wheel) or your Central Office to see if your school will reimburse you for purchasing my online PD workshops.

I have had districts contact me and submit a Purchase Order for workshops, which they then turn around and share with their Art Teachers and these lucky people no longer have to sit through grueling PD sessions that lack anything of substance in the art classroom.

All workshops are recorded versions of the originals, with Q&A sessions at the end. Watch and rewatch at your leisure.

The workshops come with ready to use classroom resources in the form of lessons, skill builder exercises, video tutorials for students, rubrics, reference images for art projects, and so much more.

Once completed, print out your Certificate of Completion, submit it to your admin team, and wa-LAH! Relevant professional development – enjoyed in the comfort of your own classroom with a piping hot cup of coffee.

 The only thing missing is the 45 minutes in the freezing cold auditorium listening to someone drone on about data points….oh wait, that was a momentary flashback…

Currently, the list of Art Workshops for Educators – all complete with classroom resources – is:

(click on the titles for further details and course contents video)

Teaching Beginner Drawing

Teaching Colored Pencil 101

Teaching Skin Tones in Colored Pencil

Teaching Acrylic Painting

Teaching AP®Studio Art

Foolproof Fabulousness – Classroom Management

Teaching Beginner Portraiture

Teaching High Contrast Drawing – White Colored Pencil

And there are more art workshops to come. I’m thinking watercolor, life drawing, charcoal, oil pastel, pen and ink, I have a list a mile long. 

Be Among the First to Know

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Each one comes complete with classroom resources. Take all six!

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Have a wonderful and safe year and Happy Teaching!

Tiff 🙂

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