Hello, and welcome to my website! In these pages, you will find my portfolio created to showcase my coursework from my Master of Arts in Educational Technology at Michigan State University. It includes artifacts from my graduate coursework, my resume and teaching philosophy, and examples of student work.
I am passionate about visual arts education, arts education advocacy, and thoughtful technology integration. A second career teacher, I am excited to be a science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) educator. I teach Project Lead The Way (PLTW) in two elementary schools in Ann Arbor Public Schools (AAPS), Michigan. In this role, I co-teach computer science and engineering. Before joining the AAPS team, I taught Visual Arts Education for three years. As you might imagine, I am a passionate advocate for the arts, and endeavor to put the “A” in STEAM in my current role.
Some people are surprised when they find out that I went from teaching art to teaching engineering and technology, but I think it makes perfect sense. In both of those classroom settings, my students work collaboratively to solve problems, use their creativity as they make projects to show what they have learned, think critically when they find there is not one right answer to a question, and communicate with each other as they share ideas and tell what they have learned. Students develop those 21st-century skills in art and engineering and technology, as they learn about the world around them through making, struggling, questioning, thinking, and iterating.
Besides my role as a STEAM educator, I am also a wife, mom, artist, and maker. I am married to my high school sweetheart, Bill Van Loo, and have been for a long time. Together, we have three beautiful children who have helped form us into the people we are today. We live with one energetic dog and one affectionate cat in a bustling home with a dining room-turned-makerspace and a garage-turned-woodshop where we all find lots to make and do.
As you peruse my site or read my blog, I hope that you’ll find something that sparks your interest. And when your interest is sparked, I hope you’ll seek to find more. That’s the joy of learning!