Educator for the Day: A day in the life of an elementary school art teacher

Published: Nov. 18, 2015 at 6:25 PM MST
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In honor of American Education Week, the Blaine County schools invited members of the community to be an educator for a day.

"Teaching has changed dramatically since most of us went through school. It's no longer the sage on the stage. It's about being very interactive and getting kids inspired and engaged in the lessons," said Maritt Wolfrom, a teacher at Wood River High School and Co-President of the Blaine County Education Association.

"The kids kind of expect you, like this is the fun room. What are we going to do here? You know, it's always loud. So yeah, there is that sort of expectation that it’s going to be a fun time. But hey, who doesn't want to be the fun teacher at school," said Joni Cashman, the art teacher at Alturas Elementary.

Ms. Cashman has been teaching art for 15 years and her classroom is full of art supplies.

She says she spends quite a bit of time collecting different materials for her art projects, including an old ski lift ticket holders, that she's using to hang snowflakes from the ceiling.

Cashman teaches 6 classes a day and after trying to keep up for just half a day, you might wonder where she gets all of her energy.

It turns out, maintaining this pace is a bit like training for a marathon.

"Well I go to bed early, because I get up early. And I do eat quite a bit during the day. I'll be nibbling on fruit and different things just to keep going. And I get exercise I really leave here and try to do something every day. Just so I get outside and get fresh air, and I love to cross country ski, we cross country ski race so, I have to get in training to be able to do a marathon ski race," said Cashman.

The other participants said their classes operated at a fast pace, too.

The overall consensus at the lunch that followed being teacher for a day was, “I'm ready for a nap.”