Facebook groups are a great way for art teachers to connect, engage, learn, and grow from other professionals in the field. There is so much value in learning from one another. More importantly, we know as art teachers that our school districts don’t provide adequate professional development for us. So here’s how we take charge of our own learning!
In the context of the recent Facebook Communities Summit in Chicago, the need for Facebook to “bring the world closer together,” is ever present. It’s simply not enough to have a platform that allows people to have a voice. Mark Zuckerberg is banking on “Groups” as a conduit for conversation and connection. In light of that, here are 9 Facebook groups which all art teachers should consider joining.
Facebook Groups for Visual Arts Teachers
Art Teachers: Beg, Borrow, & Steal
This Facebook group is a great support mechanism. In it, you will find links to great blog posts, make connections with art teachers, and ask questions about a variety of topics. Struggling between two brands of paint and want an honest review? Post a question. Need inspiration for classroom decor and organization? Expect to have a pile of people drop pictures of their classroom with helpful tips. Have advice for a colleague about how deal with unsupportive administrators? Jump into the conversation. All voices here are welcomed.
There’s a real joy in giving away a handmade object to someone who would love it. Add the element of mystery to it and you have “art abandonment.” The premise of this group is simple: make some awesome piece of art, leave it in a high profile location along with a note explaining it’s for free, and enjoy knowing it will be received by someone who loves it. Finally, post a picture to the group of the abandoned art. How fun!
Choice Art Educators
Choice-Based art is very popular right now and encompasses TAB, Reggio Emilia, and Montessori styles of learning. This Facebook group is geared towards visual art educators wanting support for their learner-directed art lessons. The goal is to promote independent thinking and personal ownership of creative choices. Expect to see teachers from across the globe participate and share ideas on how to enact this vision.
Art Journal Prompts
Part of being an art teacher is practicing your craft. Here’s a fabulous group that has a weekly journal theme. Once posted, participants chose to join in on the fun and post the results of their creativity. Prepare yourself to be inspired by the amazing mixed media artworks.
Midwest TAB Choice Art Teachers
Want more information and resources on how to implement TAB-Choice (Teaching for Artistic Behavior) in your art room? Get concrete information on how to implement TAB by engaging with others who are willing to share their struggles and successes. The biggest gem you’ll find in the group are the video content others have provided. Watch TAB being enacted in the art room in the most authentic of ways.
Play Based Art Teaching
Some crafty art educators have been employing play-based learning into their weekly lesson plans. In this group you will not only find helpful colleagues, but video content to aide in your understanding of this methodology of teaching. Highlights include a video on how to put a spin on fidget spinners and make them useful art tools as well as many in-progress photos of play-based learning projects.
Middle School Art Teachers
Middle schoolers are unique. They’re not quite elementary and not quite high school ready. They require a different approach. Art teachers who instruct 6th through 8th graders are often seeking solutions to how to grapple with respect and responsibility in a way that supports students growing needs. Find solutions to safety concerns with materials, lesson ideas to engage pre-teens, and assessment tools applicable to middle school students. In addition, there are so many great project ideas floated around this group.
Arts Integration & STEAM Think Tank
Two topics that have pervaded the art education world are arts integration and STEAM. Here’s one great place to talk about both of these topics. Promoting artmaking in the regular curriculum is vital to our students. In this group, you’ll find videos that are the best, free professional development you’ll get created by the group moderators. Learn about ideas and strategies that work in an arts integrated classroom, too.
Elementary Art Teachers
Teaching elementary art provides its own set of challenges. It’s unique from other levels of learning in terms of materials, management, and implementation of lessons. This group is excellent for giving practical advice, especially to new teachers. Want to know what to do with all that extra paint? Struggling for a theme for your early art show? Want to share a success you had in your classroom that you think will help another elementary art teacher? This is the place to do it.
What Facebook groups are you in for art teachers that provides you with daily connection and motivation? What area of art education is sorely lacking and could use a group of its own? And if you’re not in one of the groups above, click on any of the image and it’ll lead you directly there. Come join us. We’re in there being all art teacher-y and your voice is missing!