K12ArtChat the podcast

Episodes 145, 146, & 147 Resources from NAEA’s Connected Arts Networks (CAN) – Accessibility & Inclusion in the Arts Classroom Parts 1, 2, & 3

The National Art Education Association (NAEA), in partnership with the Educational Theater Association, National Association for Music Education, and National Dance Education Organization has launched a nationwide initiative to create virtual Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). The goal of this Connected Arts Networks (CAN) is to build a sustainable model of professional learning to help teachers better serve students. In the fifth, sixth, and seventh episode of this eight-part series, The Creativity Department and co-host Dr. Mi’Jan Celie Tho-Biaz dive deeply into the importance of Accessibility & Inclusion in the Arts Classroom. Following are resources and additional information for this episode.


Dr. Mi'Jan Celie Tho-Biaz

Dr. Mi’Jan Celie Tho-Biaz

Oral Historian and Co-Host

Krissi Davis

Krissi Davis

Orchestra Director, Midtown High School, Atlanta Public Schools

Krissi Davis is the orchestra director at Midtown High School in Atlanta, Georgia. She is currently a doctoral candidate in music education at Georgia State University where her research interests center on culturally responsive teaching in the string orchestra curriculum. Named as the Atlanta Public Schools Teacher of the Year in 2019 and 2021, orchestras under Krissi’s direction perform regularly in the community, and they have also performed at Carnegie Hall, the Chicago Symphony Hall, and the American String Teachers Association (ASTA) National Orchestra Festival.

Matt Grundler

Matt Grundler

Visual Arts Educator, Schimelpfenig Middle School, Plano ISD

Matthew Grundler has been an art educator in Plano ISD for 20 years. For the past 5 years, he has been teaching at the middle school level, but he has also taught K–5 for 14 years, as well as 11th and 12th grades. Matthew uses his passion of being a divergent thinker to empower students in finding their strengths of creativity. Teaching a variety of grade levels has helped strengthen his skills as an art educator in addition to utilizing the connections and ideas from other educators in all content areas. Matthew is cofounder of the Twitter chat and podcast #K12ArtChat.

Rebecca Visintainer

Rebecca Visintainer

Dance Educator at North Plainfield Middle and High Schools

Rebecca Visintainer is a Middle and High School dance educator. Rebecca studied dance at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London and is certified in American Ballet Theatre’s National Training Curriculum Pre-Primary through Level 3. She remains active within the larger dance community and has served as a part-time lecturer for Rutgers Graduate School of Education, instructing a course on social justice for the Dance Education Program. Additionally, Rebecca has written interdisciplinary dance and theatre lesson plans for the New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Teacher Resource Committee.

Sean Turner

Sean Turner

Assistant Adjunct Professor at Hunter College

Sean Turner has developed and led various performing, multimedia, literacy, and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) programs for at-risk youth. His research interests include critical youth studies, multimodality literacy, critical discourse theory, special education, and the application of Lessac Kinesensics (Bodyvoice Training) within educational, health, and wellness contexts. As an educational leader, Sean has been instrumental in the development of remote, writing, and social–emotional learning supports for various schools within the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE).

Kirsti Lewis

Kirsti Lewis

Executive Director, Consultant, Instructor
People Like Us

Kirsti Lewis founded People Like Us in 2016. With a team of neurodiverse consultants, therapists, educators, and performing artists. Kirsti works with school districts to help them use the arts to create more effective and inclusive learning environments. Additionally, she consults with organizations across the country to help them build their own sustainable, inclusive programs. Kirsti currently serves as an Executive Board member for Georgia’s Council of Exceptional Children.


National Art Education Association
National Association for Music Education
National Dance Education Organization
Educational Theater Association
NYC Dept. of Education’s Office of Arts and Special Projects (OASP)


Connected Arts Networks information on NAEA website
CAN Press Release
Tip Sheet

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