At some point in elementary school all I did was draw mountains. Three mountains, to be precise. One in front of the other. I had just discovered the magic of representing perspective on a two dimensional surface (not that I knew to express that in words back then). In middle school my visual fixation was horses. In high school it was superheroes. In college I figured I should just major in art. After getting my BFA in Drawing I went on to use my art skills to make murals while volunteering with City Year Detroit, to design visually engaging lesson materials while teaching English in Japan on the JET Program, and to serve as the basis for my MAT in Visual Arts Education. Currently, I teach Japanese part-time at WSU, do freelance translations when I can, and help take care of the family cats. You can view samples of my art work in the “My Artwork” section of this site.
Are good grades proof of knowledge, or just proof of more knowledge than others? I have wondered this since my fifth grade classmates told me about “grading on the curve.” Since then, I have strived to truly learn; to master content to the point I can retain it and apply it to future situations, confident I possess the expertise my grades say I do. My philosophy of teaching has thus emerged from my philosophy of learning: when students discover true learning leaves them better prepared for the challenges that lie ahead, they are more engaged and committed to succeeding for personal fulfillment.
The most important outcome of studying art is the ability to think critically, which I believe is developed through creative endeavors. No matter what we are working on, students will be asked to analyze their progress with guiding questions and reflections; and they will connect current material to past projects, other classes, and life beyond school. Likewise, I will reflect upon my own performance to ensure all students comprehend the material and its value. Effective and meaningful instruction combines the needs of the particular learners in the room with the inherent modality of the content being studied; keeping these things in mind I can adjust the way I deliver content and feedback as needed to ensure all students succeed as creative, critical thinkers. When students maintain a high level of effort and thoughtfulness throughout the year, putting more time and effort into their work as time goes on, then I will know I have met this goal.
MAT K-12 Visual Arts Education (to be completed May 2018)
BFA Fine Arts concentrating in Drawing
BA Asian Studies concentrating on Japan
Japanese Language Proficiency Test Level N1
Adult & Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED (valid through November 2019)
See my LinkedIn profile, accessible from that link as well as the “In” buttons at the top and bottom of every page here, for detailed work history.