Colleen Hait '15
Sculpting in Our Community: Working Three-Dimensionally with Elementary School Children
Major/minor: Art Education
Hometown: Oneonta, NY
Project mentor: Dr. Kristin Baxter
- Briefly describe your SOAR project.
My partner and I designed a summer art camp that was held here at the college in July. We researched current teaching strategies and various sculpture materials so that we could offer the students an artistic experience that exceeded what they had learned in school. My partner and I comprised hours of lesson plans that encompassed the three-dimensional aspect of sculpture while also relating to a larger theme of peace which was discussed throughout the week.
- What motivated you to participate in SOAR?
After completing two SOAR projects in summers prior, I was excited to expand on the annual summer camp program and improve my skills in lesson planning. I also wanted to test the knowledge I have gained from my honors project, concerning ceramics, to an actual classroom experience –which was possible through the SOAR program.
- What are the results of your work on this project?
The summer camp ran smoothly for the most part. We ran into some unexpected complications with the firing of the kiln, but were able to adapt and overcome the obstacle with our students through alternate projects. We received a positive review of the camp from campers and parents alike in our feedback forms. We are hoping to keep the enthusiasm for art alive and offer the students another opportunity to create by hosting an encore ceramics workshop this spring.
- What are your personal takeaways from the project? And do you plan to continue work on this project after SOAR?
After working on this project, I can better edit my honors project that will be completed this fall. I now know what I need to research further and what questions to reflect on with my advisor. I also feel much more confident to teach in a classroom after graduation because of this additional experience in the art room with my own students.
- What clubs/sports/activities/community service are you involved in?
I am the president of the National Art Education Association (NAEA), a Twenty-Six Points Student Ambassador, a Resident Advisor (RA), and a member of The Newman Association, Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK), Kappa Pi (KP), and Kappa Delta Pi (KDP). I also volunteer at William Penn Elementary.
- Have you received any awards/recognitions here?
I have made Dean’s List each semester, and have been recognized for three SOAR projects throughout my time at Moravian University.
- Briefly, what are your future plans and career goals?
I hope to earn a teaching position in North Carolina after graduation. My plan is to teach art in a school setting while simultaneously working toward a master’s degree in the field of Special Education, with a focus on Autism.