Barrington 220 Staff Profile: Paul Corriveau How a middle school art teacher is teaching students to think critically & Creatively.

Station Middle School Art Teacher Paul Corriveau has created a vibrant, exciting space for students to enjoy. When walking into his classroom in the “D” wing of the building, students are greeted with colorful walls filled with murals and other artwork they created in class, paired with softer lighting, perfect for working artists.

Mr. Corriveau's room is unique and inviting, allowing students to collaborate and be creative with ease.

Corriveau’s professional career didn’t start out in the classroom. When he graduated from college, he took his creative and visual arts talents and went into the advertising industry.

“I went into production. I did package design, web design. I did all of that right out of college, and then I moved on to be the senior web designer for Loyola University of Chicago,” he said.

Although he didn’t start out as an educator, Corriveau always knew he’d be a teacher someday.

"Even before undergrad, I always said I was going to go into the real world, get some experience and come back to teach what I love to do," Corriveau said.

“Even before undergrad, I always said I was going to go into the real world, get some experience and come back to teach what I love to do,” he said.

Corriveau was first introduced to teaching by his grandmother, a former Barrington 220 teacher who joined the Peace Corps upon retirement and spent three years in Thailand. When Corriveau graduated from high school, he joined her overseas and volunteered as an art and English teacher. In his own words, he was “hooked” on teaching from then on.

Corriveau works with a student on sketching a drawing.

His wife gave him the motivation to switch over to a teaching career when she left the business consulting industry and became a junior high school math teacher.

“It got the ball rolling a little bit faster,” he said. “I went back to school, got my teaching certificate and student taught at Station Middle School. I absolutely fell in love with the middle school age group.”

Corriveau impressed the leadership at Station during his time as a student teacher. They enjoyed his talents so much that he was later offered a full-time position as the school's art teacher.

Corriveau works one-on-one with students throughout each class period, offering individualized attention and support.

Corriveau integrates the One to World technology into his classroom almost daily. Here, a student is using a grid on his iPad to help him sketch a drawing.

Murals created by students are common in Corriveau's classroom and throughout the Station Middle School campus.

Students enjoy Corriveau's class so much, that many choose to come back during Colt Time, the student-choice advisory period.

Corriveau connects with middle school students, and enjoys getting them to think critically and solve problems through art.

His class is more than painting and drawing. Students learn all visual arts including ceramics, digital photography, Photoshop, and the more traditional mediums as well. Corriveau uses his advertising and marketing background to get students to take what they are doing in art class and apply it to real-life situations.

“We’re always going to have fun in here,” he said. “I don’t give answers, instead I ask questions. I let them figure out through failure. In most classes, failure is a bad thing, but in here, it’s important to learn from your mistakes. It’s a great opportunity to show kids that you can fail and learn from your mistakes in an environment that is conducive to that.”

"We're always going to have fun in here," he said. "I don't give answers, instead I ask questions."

Corriveau has spent the last seven years at Station, and doesn’t plan on leaving anytime soon.

“I get to teach what I love to do every day. I love coming to work to do just that,” he said. “This is what’s next for me.”

"I get to teach what I love everyday." -Paul Corriveau
Created By
Morgan Delack
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