Monthly Mentor

Natalie C. Jones (February)
Each month, a different member is the guest writer for the NAEA Monthly Mentor Blog. Natalie C. Jones is an artist, small business owner, and the director of education at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture. She has 10 years of experience working as an art teacher and teaching artist throughout the east coast and the Midwest. Click "GO" to read her full bio.



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November 27, 2020

November in Review

By Lark Keeler

As it is time for my final reflection, I want to begin by offering my sincere gratitude to NAEA for this opportunity.  It has allowed me to stretch and explore new ways of thinking and expressing, creating and communicating.  

This month of November I hope that you have had moments to cultivate gratitude in your life.  As we continue to move into the winter season, we begin to shift to ideas of gift giving.  With the action of giving, also comes receiving.  I invite you to take a moment and feel the rhythmic energy of giving and receiving as you inhale and exhale.  Reconnect to the space you are in.  Cultivate feelings of wonderment and awe, gratitude and curiosity.  

Send loving-kindness into the world by starting with yourself and expanding your circle outward to friends, family, community, country, and to the earth.  Try a metta, or loving-kindness meditation to start a new ritual of giving love to yourself and love to others.  

Know that your work in arts education makes you a gift to many others around you.  Know that you are the best part in a student’s life.  Your wisdom and compassion, enthusiasm and joy for the visual arts is a gift to the learners you work with.  Your passion for life-long learning and sharing lifts others.  These are gifts that you give to the world as educators.  

Remind yourself about the power of receiving, as you give so much.  Remember to breathe, to reflect, to be gentle with yourself.  Take time to fill your well.  Receive the blessings of purposeful pauses and recalibrate your bodies, minds, and spirits to be united and continue to be abundantly creative forces in the world.   Receive this hope and encouragement for a renewed resolve and approach as we conclude 2020 and move into a new year with a refreshed vibrancy, ready to continue in the work that we are called to do.  



Greta Kelley

Very true. Thank you so much for this very inspirational and motivating post!

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