Matt and Laura Grundler | April 2017

Share Your Crush – #K12ArtChallenge

It’s no secret that we have a crush on Nic Hahn also known as @MiniMatisse.  She is an art teacher blogger supreme who shares everything with her community.  This month she took on the challenge of hosting both a chat and the monthly challenge and connecting to Valentines and making it extremely fun.  Nic challenged us to share all the things we crush on! 

Because we like to highlight and extend the conversation with our hosts so you can get to know them better, we thought we’d ask Nic to answer a few questions from Team Grundler.

Nic, please tell us a little more about yourself.  We know you are an elementary art teacher and blogger, but we’d love to know more about you.  Something that might surprise our readers?

I really share a lot of myself on my blog, but let’s see, something about me that you might not know.  I grew up on a pumpkin farm (Tweite’s Family Farm). I spent my summers in the garden and painting large murals for the farm. My parents were supportive of my creativity because they knew that’s where my life was going to take me.  I struggled in school… I worked hard for ‘C’s… but I always tried.  I had some natural ability in Art and that has been my path.  I went to University of Wisconsin Stout for Studio Art but my parents highly encouraged to add Art Education onto my degree. I thought I would teach for a while and then move into a different career… but here I am fifteen years later, and loving it. The space between Art, Education, and Family is blurred.  I love the life I have been blessed with.

You’ve been sharing with the chat since we started, why do you find it important to participate and share?  Do you feel that social media had a place in education? 

I feel that social media is a perfect fit for education, especially Art education. We as Art teachers are so often an ‘only’ in our buildings. Social media allows us to reach out and become inspired by others.  It allows us to celebrate the amazing experiences we see everyday in our Art studios.  We can ask questions and advice from others who do the same job in the next town over, or across the world.  I love the global aspect of social media too. It’s amazing to connect with my online tribe on a regular basis via the #k12artchats.

We loved your challenge and chat idea for this month.  Where did the idea come from and what were some of the highlights??

To me, social media is mostly about celebration.  Sharing the love, recognizing others for what they do, how they inspire you is key to keeping a positive digital footprint. Sharing your #Crush was a perfect way to celebrate others.  It was also a great way to get to know one another. I have loved to see others post this month.  Here are a few post that made me smile.


Living in Wisconsin for a while, I know how these cheese heads love their Packers.  Great share!


Love the color and the share.  What a creative way to answer this #Crush question.


We don’t just share our favorites… our creative #PLN draws, designs, and creates images to explain themselves.


I loved this one.  I asked about others medium #crush.  This was such a great response!


I loved seeing responses from all over the world.  I learned a lot this month from our #PLN

What was your favorite question from the chat and why?  Also did you have a response that struck you as especially unique or awesome?

I love seeing our #PLN’s personal artwork.  Question two allowed the #k12artchat to share their art with the group.  As always, our group was positive, responsive, and thoughtful. The chat was a success.

Switching gears, your Artist Trading Card classroom exchange has been a big hit.  (and we really liked the teacher to teacher exchange too) Any plans in the works for upcoming exchanges?

Lately I have been working a lot on #CareersInArt and #BitOBio lately.  This has been my focus for my class.  I have enjoyed sharing these lessons with others on my blog.  I plan to do the third annual Artist Trading Card Exchange to be announced in Aug. There will be some changes this next year.  I plan to change the ‘due’ date for later in the school year. Around the holidays is a hard time to send out 100 plus packages.  Dan from the post office (yep, we became chummy enough to call each other by first name) made the suggestion to move the due date back.  I’m excited because I know it will be the best exchange yet!! Keep your eye out!

We love your presentations, hard to believe but people are making plans for summer.  Will you be presenting anywhere, either online or in person. Team Grunder would love to come to Ipadpalooza in Minnesota, since we can’t make the Austin one this year.

So far, I have a few commitments. I’m excited to be presenting at Education Closet’s Online Conference this summer. I will be presenting on Sphero’s. I will be presenting two days at Resource Training.  I will be focusing on social media as PD, Flipping the Classroom, and Artist Trading Cards. I will be presenting at an Arts Camp for local Art Teachers. There might be a few more on the agenda, but for right now, these confirmed. Hope to see some of you join me.

And last, do you have any parting thoughts for the community, ideas you’d like to share or questions for Team Grundler?

We have something so special with our #k12ArtChat! Sometimes I think this #PLN understands me better than the people in my physical world when it comes to Art education.  Teaching is such a big part of my world that it’s important to have this group, to have a tribe who gets it, who can help me be a great teacher. Thank you Grundler team for fostering such an amazing group.

Nic we can’t thank you enough for being such an important part of the K12ArtChat and K12ArtChallenge.  Can’t wait for you to host again! 

Sending you Creative wishes,

Matt & Laura Grundler

About the Author

Laura and Matt Grundler are art educators from Plano, Texas. They are also proud parents, bloggers and founders of the popular Twitter Chat #K12ArtChat. After teaching middle school art, high school art and working as an assistant principal, Laura has moved into the role of district Visual Arts Coordinator. Matt started out as a graphic designer; however after finding the commercial side of design to be unsatisfying, he soon found his niche as a K-5 Art teacher. Both Laura and Matt are passionate about raising their three creative kids, sharing their love of art education with their professional learning network and continuing to grow everyday.