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Teaching Artist Conference to be Held at Oddfellows Playhouse March 24th

Submitted by Oddfellows Playhouse

(March 6, 2024) — The Southern New England Teaching Artist Conference will be held at Oddfellows Playhouse, 128 Washington Street in Middletown, on March 24, 2024 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The conference is hosted by the Teaching Artist Hub, an initiative of a partnership between the Connecticut Office of the Arts and Oddfellows Playhouse Youth Theater.

The conference intends to nurture the field of teaching artistry in Southern New England by bringing together artists, educators, administrators and organizational leaders for a day of workshops, panel discussions, food, fellowship and a rousing keynote address by eminent teaching artist and author Eric Booth.

“This is a day for anyone interested in the arts and education, from school administrators to young people just starting out as teaching artists,” says Teaching Artist Hub Coordinator Lanea Sellem-Collins. “From the keynote by Eric Booth to the closing panel discussion on Teaching Artistry, the conference should be inspiring and rewarding for anyone from the most seasoned teacher to a young artist wanting to find out more about the field.”

The day will kick off with Eric Booth’s keynote, titled “What is a Teaching Artist, and Why Do We Matter?” Booth is an author, educator, actor and co-founder of the International Teaching Artist Collaborative. He is a pioneer in the field of teaching artistry. His most recent book, published in 2023, is “Making Change: Teaching Artists and Their Role in a Changing World.”

Following the keynote, the day will feature three hour-long workshops on topics ranging from practical (Connecting to Curriculum, Residency Planning, Trauma-Informed Teaching Practices, Teaching in Challenging Spaces), to administrative (Grant Writing for Teaching Artists, Taxes) to human/social justice (Representation Matters, Kingian Nonviolence through the Arts, Artist as Cultural Healer).

At the middle of the day lunch will be served to all participants, and there will be time to mingle with fellow teaching artists from throughout New England.

The conference will end with a panel discussion, moderated by Hartford-based fine artist Andre Rochester, addressing “Teaching Artistry Today.” Panelists include Connecticut Office of the Arts Director Liz Shapiro, Arts for Learning Connecticut Executive Director John-Michael Parker, and New England Teaching Artists Collaborative Executive Director Paul Gambill.

The Southern New England Teaching Artist Conference is offered to participants free of charge, thanks to generous support from the Connecticut Office of the Arts/DECD. Registration is required. For more information, or to register, go to www.theteachingartisthub.org or call 860-347-6143.

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