HCS Teacher Selected as Presenter at National Art Education Association
Posted on 05/09/2023
Stephanie Hardin

(Chattanooga, TN)- Hamilton County Schools congratulates Normal Park Museum Magnet Arts teacher Stephanie Hardin on being selected as a presenter at the National Art Education Association convention for her research on culturally responsive teaching in the art room. 

After years of research and collaboration with four other art educators, Normal Park’s Stephanie Hardin was honored with the opportunity to present their research at the NAEA convention. This prestigious association connects many art teachers across the US with different learning plans, perspectives, and resources. Hardin explained that hundreds of applicants submit proposals for the association, but only a select few get chosen. This year she was excited to present the research that she and four other educators have been working on since college.

This research focuses on culturally responsive teaching in the classroom which ranges from specific lessons on cultures to broad recommendations on how to ensure the lessons are not appropriative. Hardin hopes this will help other teachers enrich their culturally responsive teaching in the classroom. By having four different teachers from four different states bring different perspectives, she was able to show an enriched learning experience that takes into account all students and cultures. 

Hardin’s main focus was on creating a safe space in the art room, where students can have a place they feel comfortable and have a voice. Her approach in the classroom is to have restorative practices where kids learn they are important, they matter, and there is nothing they can say where they will be judged. Hardin explained when you approach art that way, you create an environment where the students can share and build confidence which follows them through their education, and helps them respect other people and other cultures. She states, “If they start that mindset now, then they can grow and be better students and better people all around.”

In Hardin’s own classroom, she wants her students to feel seen and important. She shared she’s been able to put her students' art up at the hunter museum and entered their works in the Bessie Smith Cultural Center art project. Hardin stated, “Any way to share their voice, get out in the community and not just stay in the walls of the school.” She wants her students to get out, be seen, and be heard. 

Hamilton County Schools congratulates Stephanie Hardin on her achievements and on presenting her research at the NAEA convention.