Hoosier native and art
educator Bridget Swinney from Theodore Potter School 74 was one of five IPS
teachers awarded a Lilly Endowment Teacher Creativity Fellowship for this
summer. With her grant she went on an excursion through Scotland and
Ireland “tracing family ancestry through textile arts.” She
titled her grant Stories Woven with Love – A Personal Study of My Celtic Heritage
Through Textile Arts. 

Swinney believed that
being given the opportunity to explore her family history while learning traditional
knitting and weaving would infuse passion and a new level of understanding into
her job as an educator. “By being placed in a role of a student, I will
also have the chance to develop a stronger understanding of challenges and
successes my students might face when learning new material,” said Swinney.

When she wasn’t
visiting castles and touring weaving/knitting craft villages, she spent
her time exploring the Scottish Highlands, lochs, castles and woolen mills and
discovering her family roots through a creative lens of fiber arts.

She plans on bringing
both her great joy in learning new things and her travels into the classroom by
creating a unit on identity, focusing on shared community and experience
through various art media. “This will help strengthen my teaching
practices overall,” she said. 

We are so pleased to
have such talented instructors like Swinney and are extremely proud of all of
the wonderful things they are accomplishing. We look forward to seeing the amazing
artistic creations that will come from Swinney’s classroom throughout this
upcoming school year!