Beginnings are important. Plato says “The beginning is the most important part of the work.” This post marks the start of many things; to name a few, this blog, a new year and our first art car.
This blog came about because of multiple requests from other art educators for shared lesson plans and my pursuit of the Fund For Teachers grant. As an art teacher, I understand how free or discounted resources can be vital to a program. The internet is a crazy, fantastic place to find these resources, but not every teacher has the time to hunt out the quality ones. With this site, I want to create a community where vetted resources about from everywhere, including my travels. I have decided after getting hooked on wanderlust that I will visit every continent before I die. I knew I wanted to start in Thailand. After I had gushed about this to a friend of mine, she told me about the Fund For Teachers opportunity. I have little experience with grant writing but a 5,000$ scholarship to pursue educational research where ever you dream…brain explodes! Speaking of free resources! My proposal inspired me to write this blog where I can record my research discoveries. Whether I get the grant or not, I now see that this blog is a must. Just writing this introduction reminds me how much I love to write about the things I love and share it with people that understand.
As for the art car, see the photo above, it has been a lifelong dream of mine to help facilitate an art car. My father and his brothers owned a used car lot near the Houston Heights area. Every year he would donate car parts to local art car artists and one year I had the opportunity to help an artist named Mark Bradford. The high school me geeked out when he asked me to skate next to the Manta art car! I used car parts to finagle my art car Manta costume and strolled wide-eyed through crowds of eclectic Houston artists and lit up cars that decorated the night drag. I met some folks though my grad school professor and an organization called Grassroots Art in Action that invited my students and me to participate with their car and create bike sculptures for the ride along. After two years helping out the other group, I decided it was time for us to get our own. I reached out to the art teacher community and as fate would have it someone stepped up with a car donation three weeks after I sent out the request! My students dove in and are planning amazing things for our car. I have a dedicated group of 5-7 students that come after school twice a week to work on the car. Just today I also got an email from a local restaurant that they want to help sponsor our car!
Beginings …are often messy and beautiful. Like the car above they may start out broken or used but this I think is where the greatest potential lies. I am excited to see where these beginings lead or what other opportunities they will lead to.