Faculty Spotlight: Kevin Baer

Faculty Spotlight: Kevin Baer, Art Teacher

Name, Job Title, Classes you teach?

Kevin Baer, Art Teacher. I teach all levels of art students at Holy Cross – 5th and 7th graders as well as all levels of high school – Art I, II, III, IV and A.P.

Where did you go to college? What is your degree(s) or field of study?

I went to Santa Clara University, a small Jesuit school in California.  I earned my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and went on to graduate school at University of New Orleans to achieve my Master’s Degree in sculpture.

What is the most interesting part of your job?

Making art with young artists!  I am constantly surprised and inspired by what my students create.

How long have you been working for Holy Cross School?

This is my fourth year teaching at Holy Cross.

What is one thing that you think makes Holy Cross School a special place?

An emphasis on cultivating the spirit and reflecting upon what it means to be a good person in the world is something that makes Holy Cross a special place.  We are learning specific skills and content, but we are also working on becoming better human beings.

Tell us about your favorite memory from your time teaching at Holy Cross School? (Or teaching in general)

While doing a short teaching residency through the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, I had the opportunity to work with some young students to create a large group art project.  Afterward, I received a tiny thank you note from an elementary student that thanked me for giving them the confidence to make art and to believe in themselves.  Those moments, however brief, are why I love teaching.

Tell us about your teaching philosophy.

Every student is different, and you need to meet them where they are.  Being an effective teacher is a lot more about listening and empathy then it is about dazzling video presentations, lesson plans or degrees.  I also believe everyone has the capacity to be creative and make art – everyone is an artist, maybe they just don’t know it yet.

Solidarity Project - Coping with Crisis

I wanted to do something constructive and uplifting in response to the current health crisis, so for a recent assignment young artists made “Solidarity Signs.”  My 5th and 7th graders created posters to hang in their windows to express positive messages of solidarity in these difficult times.