On Tuesday, it was my extreme honor to be one of the two featured speakers for Edweek’s webinar on Common Core and the Arts.  Lynne Munson of CommonCore.org and myself were selected by the esteemed Erik Robelen to share with the nation what we are each doing in our work to ensure that the Arts are at the heart of the Common Core Standards – both in their implementation and their interpretation.  I was humbled by the experience and heard so many great questions from all across the country.  It’s obvious that there is such a desire to integrate authentically using the arts as both an entry point for all students to access the new Standards, and for the arts themselves to be showcased for the value they intrinsically bring to the world for their own sake.

In case you missed the live webinar, I invite you to view it on-demand from EdWeek’s website (Lynne and I spoke for about 20 minutes and then we took 40 minutes of live Q&A):

2-19-13-Art-and-the-Common-Core

And, I thought you all might to hear a little bit about “behind the scenes” on one of these national webinars.  Now, just so you know – it was downright scary to watch the previous week’s webinar to get a flavor for what I was getting myself into.  EdWeek has some tremendous speakers and guests and the audience doesn’t mess around.  They want practical, realistic solutions – not pie-in-the-sky theory – from these live events.  But then again, when I’m taking an hour out of my day to listen and participate in something, I want it to be worthwhile as well.

Basically, the amazing folks at EdWeek contacted Lynne and I separately to be a part of this event.  We then each created a set of 8-10 powerpoint slides that covered our whole belief in the Arts and Common Core within a 10-minute timeframe.  Erik told us to be prepared to move it along because they really hold tight to their time limits.  Here’s a look at one of my slides (it’s pretty basic – I tend to believe that slides shouldn’t contain a lot of bullets, but needed everyone to see the standards being aligned here).

arts integration lesson edweek

The day before the webinar was supposed to be our practice day, but because that was President’s Day, we ended up doing our practice run-through only 4 hours before the actual event.  Talk about stress!  But Megan and Erik walked us through the whole process and it was so easy. We just needed access to our slides, an internet connection, and a land-line phone.  From there, it was really just like presenting to a room full of people.  Except that I was in one of our conference rooms in my school district staring at a blank white wall and my computer screen.

I have to say that this was a fantastic experience.  The good people at EdWeek were so helpful and gracious through the whole process and it was a true pleasure to get to present alongside Lynne.  I do sincerely hope that you will watch the on-demand webinar if you didn’t catch the live version, and perhaps share it with others who might find it useful.  I’d love to hear your comments below about what you thought about the content and questions that others had.  Is there something you’d like covered in more detail?  If so, we’ll make sure to do that right here.  Thanks to everyone for your support – you all rock!

P.S. – Our Connectivity Conference 2013 format is based upon a larger version of what you see in this webinar.  Interested?  Registration is now open!