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Ohio Art Education Association Conference Report

Hannah Rodenhausen, senior art education major from Marysville, Ohio.

Attending the 2013 OAEA Conference in Toledo was such an interesting educational experience. It was my first time ever attending a conference and I was able to see and learn so much from the presenters, vendors, and fellow art teachers. It was a wonderful experience for a student to have and I am so grateful I had the opportunity. I definitely plan to go back when I become a teacher.

I went to a presentation called “Surviving Student Teaching”, where two recent Art Education graduates talked about their experiences student teaching and how they “survived”. They spoke very honestly about the amount of work they had to put into it and they gave welcome advice on how to still have a life while student teaching. They made it clear how well student teaching prepares you for the real world and how you are continually learning, even when you are a teacher.

I also received a bunch of sample art supplies from vendors as well as lesson plans, business cards, and catalogs. A lot of the vendors had supplies available to purchase and were even offering additional percentages off! I purchased an art book called “Color Mixing Recipes for Portraits”, which will be very useful to me as an artist as well as a good reference for my future students. The vendors at the conference really had a lot to offer. There were classic art materials such as paint, markers, crayons, and clay, and some that were not so classic, such as leather, wool, and polymer clay. Seeing these materials and even getting to work with them was a very easy way to get inspired about using the materials in a lesson plan.

If there is one main thing that I learned at the 2013 OAEA Conference, it is that Art Educators are wonderful, fun, vibrant, creative people. Everyone that I spoke with was genuine and kind. They were the kind of people that I would share anything with (and I did share). People were very excited and interested to hear that I was going to be student teaching in Spain next fall; everyone had words of encouragement or advice to offer. You could really tell that the people there were very involved in the craft of teaching, sharing, and creating. This is what is so wonderful about art; it opens people up. It lets them create and express freely, and it makes them happy. That is why I chose to become an art teacher. I want to make people happy. I want to share my knowledge with them and make them excited about art, learning, and life. This conference made me realize that I am definitely headed in the right direction.