Growing up I don’t think I ever knew exactly what kind of professional I wanted to become. All I knew was that I wanted to go to college and become a professional something. At the time computers weren’t something everyone had, and photography was left for weddings and bar mitzvahs. I was 16 when I owned my first SLR camera and immediately discovered that I have a keen eye and a knack for photography. Along with some art classes and my own motivation, I began taking hundreds of photos and always wowed friends and family members. During high school I discovered a passion for art and longed to make it my career. I became determined to build a lifestyle out of my passion.
I attended Rowan University, a liberal arts college in Southern New Jersey, a school that has a renowned art program. I grew even more experienced in all of the fine arts and art history. In my sophomore year I earned Honorable Mention in my first art show. My art drew the attention of Dr. Dianne Dorland, Dean of the College of Engineering, who desired to display student art in her office. Subsequently, that summer I sold my first two pieces to Dr. Dianne Dorland.
Concurrent to earning my art degree, I also earned my B.A. in Secondary Education specializing in Art. Throughout this process, I found that not only did I love creating art, but I loved to teach others how to create art too. I wanted to become the teacher who inspired all of the students I taught. About four years ago I relocated to Cleveland, Ohio and found myself volunteering for three different Art organizations which help support arts in the schools. I volunteered for Arts to Grow as their website editor, newsletter creator and sometimes created digital seasonal cards. Although this part I play isn’t hands on with students or teaching I know that I am playing a valuable role for this organization who has been very grateful for all I have done.
During my first year in Cleveland I held a volunteer position at the Rainey Institute where every Wednesday I worked as the lead Art teacher for their fine arts program. It was an exciting step up from my behind the scenes positions I’ve been holding.
Also after moving to Cleveland I started working for Jodi Kanter who runs M.U.S.i.C., Stars in the Classics as her assistant with building programs, building up her website and helping her discover her social media options with Facebook and Youtube. Jodi is also an artist who builds large weaving projects on commission. Working for Jodi has been an amazing experience for me because I get to personally connect with a very talented artist.
My time with the Rainey Institute was wonderful, and I was sad to leave them after the year ended. But my next venture began at the Hudson Montessori School, in Hudson Ohio. I began at the school in the winter of 2010 when they had asked me to come teacher a an expression art teacher, teaching a lesson on reduction printmaking. The in August 2011 I was hired on full time as an Assistant teacher in a 4th-6th level classroom. I was hired because of my love for Art! I was encouraged to bring in all of my artistic skills and talent into the classroom. I really enjoyed all that I was doing with my students in the classroom. This past school year I was asked to begin teaching the art expressions program for the middle school students. This was a wonderful opportunity for me to have my own classroom, with my own lessons and unit plans! Through out the past year I have been posting these lessons, with pictures and examples on my blog.
This past July I relocated to Maryland to attend the Washington Montessori Institute at Loyola in Columbia to earn my Montessori Masters degree in elementary education for ages six through 12. Living in Maryland has been a wonderful experience and I am really looking forward to continuing my Montessori journey as I begin the first elementary classroom at with Meadow’s Montessori.