Monthly Mentor

Heidi O'Donnell (December)
Each month, a different member is the guest writer for the NAEA Monthly Mentor Blog. December's monthly mentor is Heidi O'Donnell. Heidi is a high school art educator in mid-coast Maine with twenty years of experience and an insatiable appetite for learning new things. She holds a MEd in Built Environment Education, a BA in Visual Arts, a BS in Arts Education, and a minor in Art History, all from the University of Maine at Orono. Heidi is a recent graduate of the NAEA School for Art Leaders and serves as a National Art Honor Society Sponsor. Click "GO" to read her full bio.



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October 11, 2017

Trying to Make Sense of it all – Why We Need to Connect (and Play).

From: Suzanne Goulet

I had a plan.

… A plan for how this NAEA Monthly Mentor blog opportunity would create questions for us to ponder our choices in the classroom. How ideas and discoveries that we share can propel our mission through the month of October.

Then the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival mass shooting shocked and bewildered us... and continues to do so.

The plan changed… in purpose


We are Stronger Together – We move Forward

The direction has not changed. What is different is the journey. Same path… but now altered. We try to work the logic. (Logic? Really?) We remember the names, and the faces. We connect.

Mary Dunn, a dear 5th grade colleague at the Hall School in Waterville, Maine, teaches us all with a lesson in empathy and getting-to-it-ness. How we can, we must, make these events in to lessons that we learn from, to reflect on - to feel for our students, to help them to grow, for our mission to thrive.

The forwarding of an article, and the posing of a question made us stronger, because of a shared experience. Mary got us to think about how we can work together to help our students… our community.

(the article that Mary shared... an argument for play… among other points)

Our journey forever changed.


The Mountains you have Moved – How, Why and with Whom?

What is something that you have come together with colleagues to forward/defend/change?

Consider the crystallizing moment that inspired you to action?

Who is your most cherished/surprising education ally/advocate?

You are a reflective educator, understanding of complex processes engaged on the journey to understanding and discovery, for your students, you, and your community.

You are connected.




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