Winter Retreat 2011
The Winter Retreat, supported by Title II D funding and organized in collaboration with The Maine Arts Alliance, Arts Educator Argy Nestor, and Syntiro was held on January 28th and 29th at Point Lookout in Northport, Maine. It was a wonderful opportunity for arts educators and classroom teachers to gather and expand their knowledge about the arts, technology, co-teaching integration and OER. In the spirit of art and technology, the conference was engaging, dynamic, and energizing for educators across Maine.
The retreat started on Friday evening with performances by George Stevens Academy Jazz Band and the Camden Hills Regional High School OffBeats choral group. Representatives from two of the 2010 Imagination Intensive Communities reported on their work. North Haven and Camden Rockport each brought three team members to share their extensive school and community partnership under this grant. It was great to hear the highlights of their programs. Participants were each given a link to the 2011-2012 Imagination Intensive Communities grant applications.
Saturday’s opening session, led by Argy Nestor and Catherine Ring, was titled The Power of the Arts in Education. Participants then chose from a variety of workshops. Round table discussions were held by the research OER teams and the arts integration professional development OER teams. Participants had opportunities to learn about each project in depth, and received links to sites where OER are being hosted and developed. The day also included a riveting talk titled Exploring Google as a Learning Tool and BRAINS ON FIRE: Rekindling Imagination in the Classroom. Participants engaged with technology and learned specific integration lessons across the grade spans.
Energy was high as workshops kept feet moving, got voices to ring out for chorale readings, and facilitated collaboration on a wonderful sea mural. The conference truly embraced the arts and technology as tools to motivate and inspire students.