UDAM Teaching Artist; Visual Artist
Donna Pence is a career teacher , she has taught every grade level from K-12 and currently teaches the Visual Art PD classes for the Salt Lake School District Elementary classroom teachers, as well as the Visual Arts class at East High School.
Donna has a BFA with an emphasis in 3D design from the University of Utah, a Masters of Education from Utah State, and endorsements and certifications in AP Studio Art, ESL, and Commercial Art.
She is a professional glass artist and has completed public art commissions for locations across the Salt Lake Valley. Her work is also shown at galleries and in private collections. She was invited to attend Microsoft’s Innovative Educator Forum in Washington State; provided ornaments for the National Christmas tree in D.C., and worked with students to produce murals for the Veterans Hospital in Salt Lake City. Her community projects can be seen throughout Utah.
“Visual art education is about ideas, creative solutions, inventive expressions, and encouraging others to see the world’s possibilities. How do you assess that?” – this quote led Donna to look at her assessments very differently. She started building the learning assessment into the structure of the assignment by having students document the process of their work with design walls or digital presentations. The successful student can make meaningful connections between a work of art and the life of the artist. They research and seek out information, and try out new ways of reflecting on those experiences.
Each year Donna takes on a community/student project with her students. In a community setting, the experience of crating art as well as the artwork itself is changed. She hopes to empower students and have them analyze how art making practices shape the sensibilities of a community.