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Visarts summary to the 22nd Feb

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By Bridget Blair

Kia ora koutou,

I hope everybody is enjoying the high-energy that the start of the year involves,although it can feel a bit full on at first - there is a lot of talk in our staffroom about needing ‘early nights’ after days of constant interaction with students...

The antidote to this is that everybody usually comes back at the start of the year brimming with enthusiasm and new ideas / strategies for our diverse akonga.


I usually try not to indulge in regionalism but tomorrow is a significant anniversary here in ‘quake-town’ I would just like to express my respect and sheer amazement at the accomplishments of my colleagues (primary and secondary) here in Otautahi. Be proud of how you supported and managed to teach students in sometimes quite ridiculous situations and especially proud of how you supported your colleagues (and still do) in times of distress. Kia kaha - it’s a marathon not a sprint…


The most controversial threads of late have related to L3 marking...it is great that people are discussing reconsiderations and their communications with NZQA. By sharing this information the community has a clearer picture of the issues people face and the discourse and philosophies we share around assessment….these discussions will (and no doubt should) continue in this forum. If I receive any response back from NZQA I will be forwarding it to you all straight away.


MOE Initiative - New Zealand Education in 2025 - Lifelong Learners in a Connected World

Look carefully - it is a draft but I am curious what a “STEM foundation for all” will actually mean in practice (middle circle page 2) especially considering the uptake of the Arts into STEAM in increasing numbers...are we being left behind? Modern Learning environments are also pictured.


Primary Resources:


Secondary Resources:

  • Secondary Arts Term One Newsletter is out and includes dates for the Regional Arts National workshops - ‘use em or lose them’ (my words) - a valuable time to come together for PD about

  • Pobble 365 - this has cropped up a couple of times on the Primary Teachers social media site - it includes drawing ideas and could be a great 5min starter activity in a junior secondary artroom too get the creative juices flowing

  • ANZAAE’s next national conference will be in partnership with UCOL at the Whanganui School of Design, 18-20 July, 2017. No conference for 2016.


Job opportunity:

One year position teaching design and painting. Auckland Grammar.Contact  j.blythags.school.NZ

Junior classes as well full time position, units resourced and written.


Thread summary:

  • Fashion Design - thanks so much to all of you who reponded t Matthews query about the

  • History of Photography video

  • Anna asked about cameras for beginners - a great response - thanks for the idea about standard information Ben - I will  be adopting this to email to parents

  • The Level 2 design based on character design and story boarding thread had a fantastic response from Anna Heinz who generously shared a selection of botht L2 and L3 resources in this thread

  • Digital Portfolios - more PD via Yoobee coming soon with Astrid Visser


Professional links/reading:

Encourage Creativity; teach the arts - advocacy video

Janet Echelman: Taking imagination seriously

Art is a CORE subject - new legislation in the USA: It is always great to see a bit of good news…

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) replaces unpopular predecessor, No Child Left Behind Act which eviscerated federal funding and access to Arts programs for elementary students. The new act puts Arts on the ‘well-rounded’ education’  list which means that arts programs are now again eligible for federal funding. Arts are also CORE or an essential learning area in New Zealand as, all too often this word is used to denote compulsory secondary subjects. March 7-8 2016 USA Arts Advocacy Day


Ma te wa…



Bridget Blair

Arts Online Community Facilitator - Visartsnet​


Post to: visartsnetlists.tki.org.nz


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Visual Arts Community

Sharing stories, conversations, resources, and professional learning about visual arts education.