Art Educator of the Year

Celia Knight – Gates Elementary, Acton-Boxborough Regional School District, Acton

Celia Knight has been a visual arts educator since 2001, and since 2008, has taught visual arts to PreK-6th graders at Gates Elementary School in Acton, MA.  She strives to inspire students to create in ways that develop the Studio Habits of Mind and encourages them to express their individual artistic voice.  Her goal is to offer a visual arts program where students assume creative control of their art and art-making processes within an environment designed to support individual inquiry and the development of artistic behaviors.  Celia is a choice-based visual arts teacher who believes it is the individual student, not the teacher who should define the artwork created in the art studio. She, instead, functions as a facilitator, mentor, instructor, and motivator depending on the observed need, circumstance, and interest of the students.  She believes a quality art education fosters experimentation and exploration by providing a safe learning environment in which students feel comfortable taking artistic risks.  Through visual arts teaching, she hopes to guide students to make meaning of their world; and in turn, expand their understanding of themselves, the society they live in, and other cultures beyond.