Jeanette Wachtman for over thirty years has been an art educator, artist and author. She received her degrees in Art Education from State University College at Buffalo and participated in a Cultural Educational Program in Siena, Italy. After teaching 27 years in the public sector, she retired and continues teaching part time in the area of Art Education for Kennesaw State University and Georgia State University in the Atlanta Georgia area.
Wachtman received Georgia Council of the Arts Grant, a co-authored effort in 2007, and was listed in Marquis Who’s Who of American Women in the2007 Edition. She has been the recipient of the Southeastern Elementary Art Educator Award 1999 from the National Art Education Association, and Georgia’s Elementary Art Educator of the Year in 1997-98 awarded by Georgia’s Art Education Association. She was selected Teacher of the Year 1996-97 for Bryant Elementary School, Mableton, Georgia, and received the Outstanding Continuing Educator Award 1993 from Kennesaw State University Continuing Education Department.
Wachtman has presented workshops and lectures held at international, national and state art educational conferences; for university art education students; and classroom teachers since 1982. She visited Hanyang University in Seoul, South Korea and delivered lectures to Art Education students and an art lesson at Seongdong Youth Center in 2010. In 2009, Wachtman’s
lecture on Community-based Arts Program was presented at the 4th International Arts in Society Conference, inVenice, Italy.
Some presentations include Designing Thematic Curriculum, Art Advocacy Program, and Mentoring and Beyond. Her thematic cultural arts program on the culture of Turkey, Land of the Sultans was designed and implemented on the elementary level. Her contribution for the Year of Turkey class module, The History and Art of Turkey was implemented in KSU’s classes ART 1107 and ARED 4410 Curriculum and Assessment in Art. In2006, with a co-presenter, Trekking from Turkey to the Classroom, was presented at the Georgia Art Education Association Conference, Valdosta, GA. In 2008, she presented at the 7th Annual Georgia Consortium for International Studies Symposium held at Georgia Perimeter College, Clarkston, GA. She presented her art education curriculum on the culture of China after experiencing the seminar trip to Seoul, South Korea, and China in 2007.
As an artist, Wachtman has exhibited in regional and one-woman shows and received awards in juried competition since 1977. As a result of her 2005 tour of Turkey, she presented a photographic exhibit, Windows of Change-a visual narrative of Turkey, at the Istanbul Center for Culture and Dialogue, Norcross, GA and at The Art Station-Big Shanty, Marietta GA in 2006-07. Her photographs from Turkey were viewed in The Art Place Gallery exhibit, Art of the Art Teacher, Marietta, GA, and in the Institute For Global Initiatives gallery promoting KSU’s Year of Turkey.
Ms. Wachtman is the author of three books published by her company RaJean & Company, Artists, Elements, and Principles of Art, a yearlong thematic art curriculum, and The How of It - A Cultural Program Resource Guide, which illustrates innovative educational tools for designing a thematic cultural program. She co-authored Rhythm-ongs™ The History of Art - The Artists in History, which incorporates brain-based teaching strategies when teaching art history units at the elementary level.
As a board member of Georgia Art Education Association (GAEA), Wachtman chaired the Youth Art Month State Capitol Art Exhibit for five years, and was GAEA’s Elementary Division chair for two years. She co-chaired GAEA’s Capitol Gallery Art Exhibit, Office of the Governor for four years, and was Georgia’s Commission on Woman, Art Advocacy Representative in 2000.
Education is a life long process and commitment to one’s self, whether it is self-expression in the arts, intermingling within various cultures, or discovering the thoughts of other which will enrich one’s life. "Experiential learning" (Dewey) whether positive or negative, influences the very nature of our inner core thus molding and inspiring our future experiences so we become the individual we are meant to be.
Constant throughout my career as an art educator, I facilitate learning for students of all ages so they initiate steps toward self-discovery, where the realm of possibilities, goals, and dreams can be attained.
When I teach, I fashion an environment for students that generates enthusiasm for learning by responding to their endeavors in an encouraging and constructive manner. Teaching is igniting the spirit within each student, inspiring them to learn, explore, develop a curiosity and define their values. My goal is to enhance student learning as a transformative experience. When material and activities are relevant to a student’s life, they become personally engaged and transformative learning commences. I want students to feel personally changed by their participation in my classroom and continue the desire to learn.
I am a continual learner. I strive to refine my teaching practices by seeking student feedback, soliciting input from my peers, attending educational workshops and conferences to keep informed of new teaching strategies and assessment techniques. Responsive to various learning styles, I augment my courses by analyzing the educational content and then design innovative presentations.
Learning, generated in a fashioned environment, is a reciprocally educative adventure – both student and teacher exchanging perceptions, experiences, and knowledge on life’s path of discovery. Thus, changing lives for all those involved in the process. That’s my reward for teaching.