Art Education and School Year 2020-21: From Skills to Concepts—Working Across the Curriculum in a New Environment

NAEA Town Hall Conversations | January 26, 2021

View the January 26 recording here

Download the accompanying handout here

Whether a you are a new or veteran visual arts educator (or anywhere in between), this school year challenges us to look at our curriculum and instruction in new and different ways. In this conversation, our expert guests will explore and share strategies for stretching our approaches and embracing sometimes untapped areas of the curriculum that may best lend themselves to remote, hybrid, and/or limited in-person learning environments. Member-generated questions will guide the discussion, as we collaborate to offer solutions and support.

Complete information on all NAEA Town Hall Conversations is available here.


Natalie C. Jones
Director of Education
Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture Charlotte, NC

Natalie C. Jones is an artist, small business owner, and the director of education at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture. She has 10 years of experience working as an art teacher and teaching artist throughout the east coast and the Midwest. She received her BFA from Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Virginia, and her MA from The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. During the summer months, Jones travels to different countries to immerse herself in various ethnic cultural practices and artistic traditions passed down over time, and has developed a deep passion for observing, photographing, and meeting people worldwide. She has photographed people and cultural traditions in Africa, Europe, Asia, South America, and India. Some of her photographs can be found in three published books: Las Tradicionales Viven! Ñawpa Yachayninchiskunaqa Kawsanmi (2018), Heirs’ Property in the African American Community by Horace A. Jones (cover art, 2013), and about Centering Possibility in Black Education by Chezare A. Warren (in press).

Lois Hetland
Professor, Art Education
Massachusetts College of Art and Design, Cambridge, MA

Lois Hetland, professor of art education at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, trained in music and visual arts and taught K–12 students for 17 years. She is a coauthor of Studio Thinking from the Start: The K–8 Art Educator’s Handbook (2018) and Studio Thinking 2: The Real Benefits of Visual Arts Education (2013, 2nd edition). Previously she evaluated the Art21 Educators’ program (2010–2012); and co-led the Studio Thinking Network, a monthly online conversation among U.S. and international educators who use the studio thinking framework (2012–2014). From 1992 to 2018, she was affiliated with Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where she conducted research (1992–2000), was founding director of the Project Zero Classroom Summer Institute (1996–2005), and was a principal investigator (2001–2011). She did research and professional development through USDOE-funded projects in Alameda County, California (2003–2011), collaboratively conducted 10 meta-analytic reviews analyzing effects of arts learning on academic outcomes (1997–2000), and was co–principal investigator on “Qualities of Quality: Understanding Excellence in Arts Education” (2005–2008). Currently, she is Co-PI on an NSF-funded project integrating art with the science of extreme weather, Cool Science: Art as a Vehicle for Intergenerational Learning. She frequently consults and presents nationally and internationally.

Orlando Graves Bolaños
Director of Gallery Facilitation & Experiences
The DoSeum, San Antonio, TX

Orlando Graves Bolaños has an MFA in fine arts from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Throughout his 26 years abroad, art education played a foundational part in his career starting as a teaching artist. He worked with 200 professional multidisciplinary artists across Spain to create unique residencies benefiting 18,000 Title I students. In 2015, he joined The DoSeum, San Antonio’s museum for kids, where he leads a great team of informal educators dedicated to the design and facilitation of STEAM and literacy experiences for museum guests. Bolaños continues to promote the arts to children through an artist-in-residence program that employs socially engaged and social practice artists to design meaningful installations and experiences for kids 0–10 years of age. He is an instructor in the interdisciplinary learning and teaching department at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), where he works with preservice teachers. He is also working to complete a PhD at UTSA centered on informal education’s contributions to children’s familiarity and use of skills such as problem solving and creativity. You can always find him ready to serve both the formal and informal education communities near and far. Find him @SubversiveArts on Twitter.

Kimberley D’Adamo Green
Visual Art Teacher Leader
Lincoln Public Schools, University of Nebraska at Lincoln, Lincoln, NE

Kimberley D’Adamo Green is a contemporary artist and public school art educator. She has taught in Oakland and Berkeley Unified School Districts in California for the past 22 years. She studied philosophy and the history of science at St. John’s College in Maryland. D’Adamo finished her BA in visual art and philosophy at Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, graduating with honors. She completed her MA in secondary education at San Francisco State University and is currently pursuing an EdD in teaching, learning, and teacher education. D’Adamo recently relocated to Lincoln, Nebraska, where she coaches K–12 art teachers at Lincoln Public Schools. She also teaches elementary arts methods in the College of Education at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

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