Favorite Things from NAEA Convention, Baltimore

This year was the first time I traveled outside of my home state to attend a National Art Education Association (NAEA) Conference. If you ever have the opportunity to attend, it is an experience you will never forget.  Listed below are some of the my favorite activities, observations, presentations and tidbits of information I picked up from casual conversations in Baltimore:

  • I had never heard about Merlot (peer reviewed online resource of teaching and learning materials). A quick search on Merlot turned up this awesome Cave of Lascaux interactive explorer.
  • LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the American Visionary Art Museum. Although I was not allowed to photograph inside, I spent about 20 minutes outside admiring the sculptural forms.

Once I finally made it inside, the theme of the museum became very clear by the words and messages incorporated into the art.  Watch this entertaining video featuring the art of Chris Robert-Antieau to get a feel for what the museum is about.

My favorite Visionary Museum message through art: “Some stare though me and refuse to see that we are different branches of the same tree.”
-Athlon Clark

  • Loved Tricia Fuglestad’s information on Interactive Whiteboards – so inspiring!
  • Attended a fantastic session titled “Why Didn’t I Think of That?” presented by Lauren Kolesar-Eatinger and Elizabeth Willett.  My favorite trick was a yarn organizer. Start by cutting out the base of 2-liter pop bottles. Next, turn them upside down and hang from the wall and walla! . . . yarn dispensers.  If you teach elementary art, you must download their full classroom management presentation (PDF 5.5 MB).
  • Delicious bookmarking was mentioned during several sessions I attended (my must-have online tool – read earlier post on Delicious here)
  • Sent a message to Secretary of Education, Arnie Duncan about the importance of creativity in education.
  • Jackie Cassidy reminded me of Animoto for Education. Watch Tricia Fuglestad’s Animoto of  NAEA ’10 in Baltimore.
  • Participated in a “5 minute idea” in a creativity presentation. Start by presenting students with paper and two lines (curved and/or straight) drawn in sharpie marker. Allow children 2 minutes to draw anything incorporating the lines in their imagination.  Everyone holds up their paper and shares their title (an important requirement).  Give them one more minute to add something in the foreground and background.
  • Discovered an amazing YouTube video (below) from Sarah Brooks and watched her fantastic use of Prezi on Web 2.0.  I also loved the Macro Photo Project she included as part of her presentation.
    • Took the plane home with the Artsonia guys and learned some top secret plans to make Artsonia even better.  (Pressure’s on guys!)
    • Learned about some great web resources from Jean King.  Special needs: I Can’t Draw Syndrome and ArtPromote.   Character development: Powerful Projects.
    • Inspired by Samantha Melvin’s teaching empathy through art curriculum.
    • Discovered a timeline of Carrie Mae Weems life!
    • Make your presentations Sticky by Craig Roland was a crowd favorite.
    • Saw a great video presentation on Universal Design Learning by Kathy Rulien-Bareis.  Her methods are very useful for creating an adaptive classroom addressing special needs.  Watch her video segments one, two, three, and four.
    • I got a chance to present an art experience that that incorporated science, writing, social/emotional development, and technology into the art curriculum.

    Tons of additional great resources from conference presenters can be found online.
    Did you attend NAEA Conference this year?  What did you discover?

    Theresa McGee

    Hello! My name is Theresa McGee and I am a National Board Certified Art Teacher and Apple Distinguished Educator teaching in Hinsdale, Illinois. My curriculum is structured around creative thinking and technology integration into the learning process. I have authored eighteen articles for the Tech4ArtEd Column in SchoolArts Magazine and several iTunes U courses for professional development. I've presented at the state and national levels including several online webinars for art educators. In 2010, I was awarded Illinois Elementary Art Educator of the Year and in 2011 I was awarded the national PBS Teacher Innovator award. I love to share ideas that contribute to the art education profession!


    • April 19, 2010

      Nancy Walkup

      Theresa, you are being very modest. You should certainly mention meeting the SchoolArts team and becoming our newest contributing editor!

    • April 19, 2010

      Jenn Tiongson

      It was great to meet you and Trish….
      I teach high school so for me it was creative was to teach AP Art History with Yu Bong Ko….also book making. It was so inspiring, I almost wish this conference was in October or November so I don’t have to wait to implement all these great ideas!

    • April 20, 2010


      I am so grateful for this post, as I wanted to attend very much and could not get funding.
      It is so great to have all your links and resources. I am in heaven tonight!!!
      Thanks again.

    • June 17, 2010


      I am also grateful that you shared your links. I desperately wanted to go to Baltimore. I attended the NAEA in Minneapolis and really had a life changing experience. Prior to that conference I was teaching art, but just didn’t have that extra whatever it is that takes one beyond the ordinary in the classroom. The conference allowed me to connect with so many great people. I missed going this year so thanks for sharing. I hope to be in Washington next spring.

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