Brubaker Teacher Named Iowa Art Educator of the Year

Ken Esveld, art teacher at Brubaker Elementary School, has been named Art Educator of the Year by the Art Educators of Iowa (AEI).

As part of the Art Educator of the Year award, Esveld, who has been an art teacher for 36 years, also received the Visual Arts Award of Distinction and $1,000 from the Belin-Blank Center’s Mary Bucksbaum Scanlan Program in the Visual Arts. He started his teaching career at Goodrell Middle School in Des Moines in 1972 and then taught in Sydney, Australia, and Eldora, Iowa, before returning to the district where he has taught at Brubaker Elementary since 2001.

In previous years Esveld was recognized as a runner-up Iowa Teacher of the Year by the Iowa Department of Education and as a National Educator by the Milken Family Foundation. He also has received the AEI Elementary Art Educator of the Year award and AEI’s award for distinguished service within the profession.

“Throughout my career, I have been repeatedly delighted by my students’ joy in discovery, their unfolding excitement about exploring ideas, and the connections they make among disciplines as we make art together,” said Esveld. “I have come to believe — and research supports this — that teaching students the observation, research, and reflection skills they need to create meaningful art also equips them with essential skills they will need to problem solve, innovate, and lead in our rapidly changing world.”

Esveld was honored at the AEI fall conference on Oct. 2, 2009.