Musings about the importance and impact of art and art education in the 21st century.

Musings about the importance of art and art education

A question regarding 'meet the teacher' nights...

♠ Posted by ArtMuse at 4:27 PM
Tomorrow is our open house. I'm nervous...Not because I don't like to meet my students parents or anything, just because I'm expecting a pretty large turnout from parents and I'd like to make their trip to the art room a purposeful one. I'm new to the school and don't have any artwork from previous years to show them, I only have completed examples of projects I've done, or some examples from students from previous schools I've worked in. I have a few ideas of things to show them and discuss, but I'm a bit antsy. What do all you art teachers out there do for meet the teacher nights in art?


I'm excited for you because at our'Back to school" night the parents go straight to their child's classroom and then leave. I had 4 parents stop in the art room this year out of a possible 450!!!! Do you have a time slot just for "specialists" so parents have to come to you? I always prepare anyway, even if they don't come. I do a raffle so that I can see who actually stopped by and pick a name the next day to give an art prize to. I also have typed out handouts for the taking, like, "ways to encourage your child in the arts", keeping a sketch book, etc.. I have the arts standards on the easel and my philosophy also printed. I had a rolling power point as well with just things about the art room. If you need more ideas, let me know and I will email you directly.

I always have about a zillion parents stop in, since the art room and gym are every kid's favorite places. I put out a sign-in sheet and, since there's always a lot of work-in-progress, I label it by class for parents to flip through (but not to take home). I put the class piles on different tables divided by grade level.

Sometimes I will put a big tray of crayons and some paper on one table, so that kids can color while parents are shmoozing. And I have music playing. Makes the atmosphere more relaxing. But I've been doing this for many years. Don't be nervous, enjoy the chance to visit and have a great evening!

Our parents' night is always a couple of days before school even starts, so I have nothing to show either. And, like your first commenter, parents walk right past my room. I meet a few of them, and a rare one or two will actually come in, but it's extremely rare. I just stand at the door and smile a lot and greet the kids from previous years. Best wishes for your night!

Just to clarify for you, the students DO NOT attend this night, only parents- I have been at this school for 20 years and it has changed so much over that time with people making time for the arts. That's why our job is SO important.

I have about 10 parents at most stop by, out of about 600 students. When they come I just introduce myself, and say that there is no work finished this early in the year, but stop back by around parent-teacher conferences. It's mainly just small talk. Sometimes art, music and p.e teachers stand around together but most parents walk to their students room and walk by us afterwards.