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Guymon, Oklahoma, United States
I am blessed to live where my grandfather homesteaded, to have three beautiful daughters who are my best friends, to have six delightful grandchildren who live nearby, to be married to my sweetheart of 35 years and to thrill to the special magic of creating my own works of art. I'll never cease to thrill to witnessing new ideas and images come to life from the point of a pencil or splash of a brush. I am blessed.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

THE STORAGE BATTLE OF AN ART TEACHER



I have been a high school art teacher for 13 years and without a doubt, the most difficult task I face isn't discipline, funding or even reaching non-English speaking students.  No, the biggest battle I have as an art teacher is organizing and storing my equipment and supplies.

I am fortunate to have a recently built classroom with a storage closet but it never fails that I am struggling with how to organize and manage.  I actually took my old classroom desks, stacked them and use them as shelves in the closet.  I have invested in a few storage tubs and portfolios to store examples but it never seems to be enough.


Like most creative types, I have a tendency toward hoarding because I never know when I meet need this stack of twenty, used mouse pads for a new project.


Storing student work and supplies is another challenge.  I am fortunate to have purchased four wire, portfolio racks that help my advanced, 2-D students keep their drawings and paintings.



Craft supplies are another challenge with limited space and students who like to "borrow" supplies when they find a chance.  This problem is multiplied with large numbers that come and go through my classroom everyday.  (AND - we all know how neat and tidy teenagers naturally are)

This week I was ending old units and starting brand new ones so supplies and equipment were overlapping.  I had blenders and drying racks set up for papermaking while I was dragging out printmaking inks, rollers and blades.  I found myself finishing up 24" x 36" (huge) ink drawing assignments while getting charcoal and pastels ready for the next projects.  I was also giving my most advanced students the freedom to select personal mediums so I had a class of 18 teens all going in different directions with watercolors, pastels, acrylics, pencil and (most chaotic of all) mixed-media-anything-goes.  

It seems I am always stirring my room like a big pot of stew but the truth is I love what I do and I am blessed to have these terrific supplies and a supportive school district.

1 comment:

Suzy said...

I hear you! I teach both high school and elementary art, and not only does my storage place become a crowded mess, but every now and then I come in in the morning to find that someone else has cleaned out their storage and dumped a bunch of whatever on me because they think I can use whatever to make something with the kids! I have more dry rotted paper in every color than you can ever imagine! And styrofoam peanuts! And toilet paper tubes! And all kinds of really strange stuff.
Love your blog.