If there is one thing I have learned over the years as an art teacher it’s this: we rarely travel the same path in finding this energizing career. In The Sparklers’ Club, our membership site for art teachers, I have the rare privilege of meeting thousands of professional and caring teachers.
And while no one teacher is exactly the same, we all care deeply about art and children. And it’s our passion for teaching art that steered Carson City teacher, Carolyn Schroder to set aside her Psychology degree and step into the world of paint and pastels.
Carolyn has been a member of The Sparklers’ Club since August 2020 and has already established herself as a full-fledged member of the who-would-have-guessed-I’d-be-in-an-art-teacher-club!
Carolyn’s degree in Psychology combined without formal art training may have deterred others, but not to this mom of four children who said “yes,” to being the art volunteer at her children’s small Catholic School.
She was asked to volunteer for two grade levels, and patiently waited for a full-time position to teach art for K-5th grade after some funding came in.
Her part-time classes already had success with Deep Space Sparkle, after following along with our free projects. Their artwork was always “bright and fun,” but she knew she would need more support once she started planning her own curriculum.
Ultimately it was the variety, easy to find standards, and grade level format that led her to The Sparklers’ Club and energized her new teaching routine. Having her lesson plans ready at a click of a button allows her to focus on the fun stuff: creating art.
“The Sparklers’ Club PDF’s are super informative. Being a kinesthetic learner myself, I enjoy prepping and doing a sample to see how it’ll work on – and from – my cart.”
Carolyn says that there’s a level of pride that is readily apparent when her students are working on a Sparklers’ Club lesson. The kids can relate to the subjects, techniques and the artists that are featured in the Bundles and allows them to become more invested in their work.
“What thrills me beyond belief is when a student tells me they can’t wait to show off their artwork, or simply students exclaiming, ‘I love this!’ during class”
She finds the Bundles are super relatable for children and appreciates that literature is often tied in with the projects.
“This is such a show stopper, especially for my younger students. It invites them into the lesson and bridges a very connectable gap between art and literature.”
This art lesson above is the “Surprise! Tiger Art” inside the Henri Rousseau Artist Bundle in the Sparklers Club.
The images above are from Carolyn’s Instagram page where she shares her student work and the magic she’s creating with her students. Her account is filled with joy and you can see how happy her and her students are creating together.
>> Follow her on Instagram @mrs.schroder.arted
I like to wrap up every Sparkler Spotlight interview with this question:
Do you have any words of encouragement for art teachers right now?
“Keep those positive pants on. We are artists! Our job is to give the kids a break from the tedious and typical and show them life is anything but… Also, have standards! Require good work from your students. Let your artists know they can do better! It inspires them to grow and feel proud of their hard work.”
The Sparklers’ Club is a monthly or yearly membership subscription for art teachers and classroom teachers. Click HERE to join the waitlist and be immediately notified when our next enrollment opens this summer.