Ms. Stone brings to Grayson a significant and innovative STEAM teaching background, along with a passion for making art and her experiences as a working artist. She comes to us after having created SparkPark, a leading-edge PreE-8 STEAM enrichment program which engages children with a variety of media, areas of exploration, and a cross-disciplinary approach; the innovative programs earned her “Best Kids’ Classes” from Philadelphia magazine in 2013. Prior to that, she worked in the commercial art world, allowing her a broader perspective on the field of art, in addition to expertise with design and photography software. She operated her own graphic design firm, Yellow Dog Design Group, which specialized in medical and educational clients, for nearly 15 years. She has also worked as an adjunct professor in advertising and design at Villanova University, Chestnut Hill College, and the Art Institute of Philadelphia. To increase representation of women artists, she also founded Moxie, a cooperative of women artists who support and promote the professional endeavors of its members.
Ms. Stone’s teaching philosophy is deeply rooted in learning across disciplines, raising conceptual questions such as “what are the boundaries of art?” Her classes have explored such sophisticated, abstract thinking through projects involving topics as diverse as arduinos, kinetic art designed to fly, the science of phosphorescence, and Japanese Bonseki. Such efforts promote and cultivate planning, problem-solving, and invention in addition to creative expression.
Additionally, she encourages students to consider themselves “makers,” which allows them to think critically, to find their personal creativity, and to approach art as a multi-disciplinary practice. While the study of art does involve learning how to make art, Ms. Stone believes that “it’s also about giving students a taste of the rich and vital art world and the voice they can have in it.”
Ms. Stone holds an M. F. A. from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and an M. A. in English literature Middlebury College, including work at Oxford University. She earned her undergraduate degree in Studio Arts with a concentration on sculpture from Middlebury, where she also minored with honors in Biochemistry.