Monday, June 20, 2022

Thomas Knab Inducted to National Teachers Hall of Fame

The National Teachers Hall of Fame on the campus of Emporia State University inducted their 150th teacher in a ceremony on Friday, June 17th. The Teachers Hall of Fame began in 1989 and hasn’t been able to have an inductee ceremony for the last two years, so it honored five outstanding teachers in 2020 and five in 2022.

Thom Knab stands at a podium holding up a piece of art. He is dressed in a black suit with a blue bow tie. To his left is an American flag. The National Teachers Hall of Fame banner is displayed on the front of the podium.

The first Art Teacher inducted into this prestigious club was Thomas Knab from Buffalo, NY. Thom has been the art teacher for grades K-4 at Dodge Elementary for the last 32 years.

Many of us know Thom from his years serving as the NAEA President, but he was awarded the NAEA’s Elementary Teacher of the Year and New York State’s Art Teacher of the year, as well as others.
It was a true honor to be Thom Knab’s cheering section for this event!

4 art educators stand in a row smiling in dress clothes at the National Teachers Hall of Fame induction. From left to right, Dr.Charity-Mika Woodard, Thomas Knab, Kathy Schroeder, and Lynn Felts.
From left to right, Dr.Charity-Mika Woodard, Thomas Knab, Kathy Schroeder, and Lynn Felts.

Thomas Knab’s guiding principles for teachers: “Foremost, enjoy what you do! Build a relationship with each child. Allow yourself time to grow. Understand that change is inevitable. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Emulate the supportive, positive, and energetic teachers in your school. Remember to always be professional and show respect for everyone with whom you work.”

Dr. Charity-Mika Woodard
KAEA Higher Education 
Kansas Art Education Association

Thursday, June 16, 2022

2022 Summer Camp a Success!

KAEA Summer Camp was held June 9th and 10th in Halstead and Newton, KS.

Members had the choice of 3 workshops and everyone in attendance enjoyed fellowship and learning new studio skills: Enameling Essentials, Kocha Weed Walking Sticks, or Plein Air Drawing.

8 photos are arranged in a grid showing women working on metal enameling projects and one example of enameled jewelry made from 2 circular pieces connected.

6 photos from the kocha weed walking stick workshop are arranged in a grid including working with metal.

7 photos from the plein air pastel workshop are arranged in a grid. The people are smiling and showing their landscape artwork.

Thank you to the members who shared photos from #KAEAsummercamp!

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Kansas Graduation Requirements Update

In April we shared information with you about the Kansas Graduation Requirements Task Force and their recommendation to cut the 1 required Fine Arts credit to 1/2 credit. (Click HERE to view that post) 

KAEA President Elizabeth Madden and board member Katie Morris met with the task force and gave the following presentation to illustrate why Fine Arts and more specifically Visual Arts are essential for the success of all students and that reducing the required credit would not help fulfill the vision of the Kansas State Board of Education, "Kansas leads the world in the success of each student." 

The graphic is split in half with the left side stating "a well rounded education is important, 1 credit in the fine arts is currently required for high school graduation. The right side says 1 credit = only 4.8% of students' academic courses. Providing students a well rounded education prepares them for college, careers, and to be global citizens. The bottom half has words on top of a photo of chalk that states "art is a universal language and through it each nation makes its own unique contribution to the culture of mankind."
The current graduation requirement is 1 Fine Arts credit, only 4.8% of students' academic courses. 

We encouraged all stakeholders to complete the survey to weigh in on if any courses should be added or deleted. At the task force meeting we attended, it was noted that MANY comments said not to reduce the fine arts credit. 

According to the task force's presentation to the Kansas State Board of Education on May 10, 2022, 2,147 stakeholders completed the survey. THANK YOU to those who participated.

We would like to note that there do not appear to be any changes to the recommendations in response to the survey.

You can watch the segment of the presentation about the recommendation to add or delete required credits here:

The recommendations have been presented. What can we do now?

The Kansas State Board of Education has not yet taken any action on the recommendations. It is likely they will vote in August. In the meantime, you are able to contact State BOE members to share your thoughts and concerns about the recommendations. State Board of Education members are elected officials who need to hear from their constituents.

District 1

Janet Waugh
715 N. 74th
Kansas City, KS 66112

Phone: (913) 620-5062

District 2

Melanie Haas
9909 Craig Dr.
Overland Park, KS 66212

Phone: (816) 226-7728

District 3

Michelle Dombrosky
14248 W. 157th St.
Olathe, KS 66062

Phone: (913) 782-1835

District 4

Ann E. Mah
3351 SE Meadowview Dr.
Topeka, KS 66605

Phone: (785) 266-9434
Cell:     (785) 231-0823

District 5

Jean Clifford
102 Drury Lane
Garden City, KS 67846

Phone: (620) 275-4317

District 6

Dr. Deena Horst
920 S. 9th
Salina, KS 67401

Phone: (785) 827-8540
Cell: (785) 822-5521

District 7

Ben Jones
P.O. Box 266
Sterling, KS 67579

Phone: (620) 278-6063

District 8

Betty Arnold
5311 E. Pembrook St.
Wichita, KS 67220

Phone: (316) 684-7792

District 9

Jim Porter
501 S. 7th
Fredonia, KS 66736

Phone: (316) 617-6779

District 10

Jim McNiece
1213 Manchester Court
Wichita, KS 67212

Phone: (316) 729-9742

Thursday, June 2, 2022

July Book Club Pick Announced

Having trouble taking the first step on your next project? 
Struggling to find inspiration? 
Join us in reading Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert! 

The image shows a book cover for Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. The cover shows colored powder exploding with the words in white all capital letters. Additional text announces it as the July pick for the KAEA Book Club.

KAEA July Book Club Zoom Meeting "Big Magic" By Elizabeth Gilbert
Join us for the July book club zoom meeting on July 28th at 7:30pm. 

Elizabeth Madden is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Time: Jul 28, 2022 07:30 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 815 6926 5212
Passcode: 082342

#ksarted #kaeabookclub

Thursday, May 12, 2022

KAEA Endowment Grants


The Kansas Art Education Association is pleased to offer free memberships through 
"KAEA Endowment Grants"!
If you have never been a member of KAEA, this is an excellent opportunity to investigate what we are all about and take advantage of all that your professional organization has to offer.

The Kansas Art Education Association will be granting a ONE-year membership to THREE (3) non-member Kansas art educators and FOUR (4) college art education students!

These endowment grants will be available annually as funds are available.

In order to be eligible for one of these grants, you need only be interested in joining Kansas' largest Art Education Professional Organization.

Applications can be found on the KAEA website at:

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Pre-Service Zoom

A white shape hangs in front of a teal background with the words attention pre-service Art educators! Zoom with us!

Attention pre-service Art teachers!

  • Do you have questions about student teaching?
  • Are you wondering what you may be asked in an interview?
  • Are you curious about what it's really like to be an art teacher?

Hang out with us on zoom and you will have a chance to hear from experienced art educators who will answer any questions you may have!

Please let us know which day/time would work best for you and we will send a link when we know the most popular time.

Access the form here:

You do not have to be a KAEA member to attend but we would love to have you as part of our organization!

Please share with all Pre-Service students--regardless of membership status!!

Feel free to participate in the zoom with a friend or a group!

Katie Morris



KAEA Summer Camp 2022

KAEA summer camp June 9 & 10 Newton and Halstead, Kansas

June 9 & 10, 2022
KAEA Summer Camp

Springdale Art & Nature Center, Halstead, KS and the Carriage Factory Art Gallery, Newton, KS!

Check out for more details!

Registration is now open! Click HERE to register.
Early-bird registration is $100.00 + supply fees for the workshop you select.  

All forms received before Friday May 20 will receive the Early-bird rate. Late registration is due by Monday May 30 and will be a fee of $120.00 + supply fees for the workshops you select.

If you are unable to attend both days, the workshop fee will be $60.00 + supply fees for the workshop you select.

We have three workshop options available but space is limited and workshops will be filled on a first come first served basis!

One hour of graduate credit will be available from Friends University for an additional fee of $85.00 made payable to Friends University when you use this link to register for the course.

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Kansas Graduation Requirements Task Force

The Kansas Graduation Requirements Task Force is currently seeking stakeholder feedback. One of the considerations is to reduce the fine arts credit. All stakeholders are encouraged to fill out the feedback form that can be found here:

The survey will close April 15th so please do not delay!

Scroll down to the questions about if you think any courses should be added or dropped from the requirements. If you can think of classes you think are needed to be added to the graduation requirements, write those in. If you want to oppose the fine arts reduction or elimination, write that specifically.

The market value assets question, addresses skills needed for employment. We argue the arts build these skills. Arts are what make us human, what connects us all together.

The task force is reviewing what Kansas students need to receive a well-rounded education that prepares them for their next phase of life, not just college. Some case studies argued that PE and Fine Arts Credits hold them back from taking advanced classes, when in all actuality, the fine arts develop many 21st century skills which are important for all walks of life.

Photo of Katie and Elizabeth smiling in front of their presentation.
The embedded slides below show the presentation that KAEA president, Elizabeth Madden, and board member Katie Morris presented to the task force on March 31st, the last day of Youth Art Month.

Saturday, April 9, 2022

Call for Workshop Proposals KAEA 2022

ART Works logo with the words call for workshop proposals

We are hard at work on preparations for the upcoming Fall Conference set for
We are now accepting proposals for workshops
for the conference. Due by July 15th.
Rock Springs workshops are intensive two-day hands-on workshops designed to give participants a deep dive into media and techniques.
To access the form click on the link below.
(Open in Google docs and/or download)

Linda Nelson-Bova

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Spring Regional Events

All KAEA Region Events are open to all. Art Educators can attend any event that interests them in any region! Bring along a non-member colleague or friend! Watch for e-mail blasts for scheduled events. 

South Central

Saturday, April 9th, 10:00 AM

Please RSVP by April 5th to

We plan to gather at the Tulip Festival in Bartlett Arboretum and do some plein air painting/drawing. We plan to meet at 10am for a demo on pastel from Lynn Felts, then spend a couple of hours making our own pieces! There will be several vendors for lunch at the Bartlett Arboretum or you can bring a sack lunch. We will have local plein air painter Phil Burress and possibly another artist joining us and showing their techniques! 


The cost will be $10 at the gate


Please bring materials for whatever medium you'd like to use:




-paint of your choice 


-water/mineral spirits in a jar


-canvas or board to paint on

-tape to secure your work incase of wind

-foldable chair




-oil or chalk pastels of your choice 


-blending stumps

-a board to tape your paper to

-pastel paper

-tape to secure your work incase of wind

-foldable chairs

Kansas City

Thursday, April 21st, 5:00 PM

Please RSVP by April 20th: RSVP Link

RSVP for our regional teacher “meet up” workshop for KAEA members and friends! Tour the Charlotte Street Foundation Fellows – 2020 and Shinique Smith: STARGAZERS exhibitions. Join Karen Gerety Folk, Curator of Education, and learn about the temporary exhibitions and create a mixed media sculpture in a mini-gallery space using foam core. LIMITED SPACE. The three local CSF artists will lecture at 6:00-7 p.m. in the museum’s auditorium. Then for the closing reception, enjoy hors d’oeuvres and refreshments in the Museum Atrium, cash bar.


RSVP by midnight on the 20th--we can take up to 20 total participants.


Link for the flyer:

Membership is not required to attend a Drive In, though we would love to have you! Click HERE for membership information and HERE to join!

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Action Needed: Kansas Graduation Requirements Task Force

The words Action Needed are displayed against a blue background. All Kansas art educators are encouraged to give stakeholder feedback on the graduation requirements taskforce.
The Kansas State Board of Education has assembled a Graduation Requirement Task Force that is reviewing graduation requirements for Kansas students. One item being considered is the reduction or ELIMINATION of the Fine Arts credit graduation requirement.

The Kansas Art Education Association has taken a stance against that consideration and has sent a letter of opposition to all Kansas State Board of Education Members as well as the members of the Graduation Requirement Task Force.  

The Task Force is currently seeking stakeholder feedback. 

All Kansas Art Educators are being encouraged to fill out the stakeholder feedback form that can be found here:

You can find the current report from the task force which includes information about the possible changes to the graduation requirements for Kansas students and the
possible changes to the Fine Arts credit requirement at the link below (report is 3 pages long):

Here is the letter we sent:

March 7, 2022

To the Kansas State Board of Education: Janet Waugh, Melanie Haas, Michelle Dombrosky, Ann E. Mah, Jean Clifford, Deena Horst, Ben Jones, Betty Arnold, Jim Porter, Jim McNiece and the Graduation Requirements Task Force

We are writing on behalf of the Kansas Art Education Association, the largest association of art educators across the state of Kansas. Our executive board, a group of passionate teachers across regions and grade levels throughout Kansas, respectfully requests that the Kansas State Board of Education allow our association to be a part of the conversation on eliminating the Fine Arts Credit as a graduation requirement for Kansas students, one of the possibilities being considered by the Graduation Requirements Taskforce. 

The visual arts are an essential part of a well-rounded education, basic to the education of all students. Visual arts education provides every student opportunities to develop the essential 21st century learning skills of communication, collaboration, creativity, critical thinking and problem solving. The fine arts are designed to build qualities such as individuality, cultural awareness, social awareness, the ability to work with others, the ability to identify and solve unique problems, and to help students grow emotionally and intellectually in ways other courses are not. The arts assist in one’s development in innovative ways that can provide successes that go beyond the present. 

The vision of the Kansas State Board of Education states, “Kansas leads the world in the success of each student.” We believe the arts are integral to student success. In addition to supporting students’ social emotional learning, the arts help develop thinking skills, dubbed the Studio Habits of Mind as part of Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Studio Thinking Project, which are important for any future career students may choose to pursue.

Given the research on employment trends and, anticipating that a variety of new career opportunities will emerge over time, that visual arts education is essential to every learner’s educational foundation and training for future employment in an increasingly complex and interconnected world. When surveyed, CEOs identified creativity as the number one trait sought when hiring. Since learners are future contributors and creative leaders of tomorrow’s workforce, this underscores the importance that every learner must have ongoing access to sequential visual arts education throughout their PreK-12 education.

One of the case studies mentioned in the task force’s presentation mentioned a student who wants to be a doctor and feels as though her fine arts credit is holding her back from taking courses that are more pertinent to her future career. In reality, Ivy League medical schools acknowledge the benefits of arts courses for future doctors. The Yale School of Medicine requires students to spend time in art museums developing their observational skills which helps them become better at diagnosis and improves their bedside manner. A Columbia University study indicated that medical students and professionals demonstrated an increased capacity for personal reflection, awareness of personal bias, and tolerance of ambiguity- all skills that can have a tangible effect on patients’ diagnoses- after taking part in a six-week art course. Roger Kneebone, professor of surgical education at Imperial College, London, said that incoming medical students lack the manual dexterity to perform sutures and calls for an increase in hands-on creative courses. These are just a few examples of engaging with the arts having lasting positive effects on students’ futures even if their future career is outside of the art field.

We urge the Task Force to reconsider the recommendation to eliminate or reduce the fine arts credit requirement for high school graduation and the Board of Education to reaffirm the importance of fine arts education for all Kansas students. We have included more information on the following page with research and proof as to the importance of fine arts in a well rounded education.  Reducing or eliminating the fine art's credit would be a disservice to Kansas students and would have lasting and detrimental effects on our entire state. We would love to speak with you more about this important issue and look forward to engaging in conversation on the education of Kansas students. 

Thank you for your consideration,

The Kansas Art Education Association

Elizabeth Madden, President,

Kathy Schroeder, President-Elect,

Katie Morris, Board Member,

Alyssa Passmore, Board Member,

Links for Further Information Supporting Required Fine Arts Courses

Coughlan, S. (2018, October 30). Surgery students 'losing dexterity to Stitch Patients'. BBC News. Retrieved February 28, 2022, from,stitching%20or%20sewing%20up%20patients 

Fulton, Mary (2021, November 19). The Importance of Arts Education in workforce preparation. Ed Note. Retrieved February 28, 2022, from 

Newman, C. (2020, January 23). How time spent in an art museum can improve medical students' skills. UVA Today. Retrieved February 28, 2022, from 

The Studio Thinking Project. The Studio Thinking Project | Project Zero. (n.d.). Retrieved February 28, 2022, from 

Yale School of Medicine. (2014, May 27). How looking at paintings became a required course in medical school. Yale School of Medicine. Retrieved February 28, 2022, from 

Sunday, March 6, 2022

Youth Art Month Exhibition

The Kansas Youth Art Month exhibition is now on display at the Topeka Shawnee County Public Library through March 26th! The celebration and awards ceremony will be held March 26th from 1-2:30 PM.  

Youth Art Month Celebration Reception 1:00-2:30 pm

-Blick Art Contest Recipients Announced

-Harry Hart Memorial Senior Scholarship Announced

-YAM Flag Winners Awarded 

KAEA Mission Statement

KAEA is dedicated to the advancement of the human and cultural understanding through the study of art by providing opportunities for professional growth and development, exchange of knowledge and ideas, and service and leadership for the advancement of quality art education.