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Lesson Plans

Re: second revision of files/themes today C:

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
wendy sauls (wsauls)
Sun, 05 Apr 1998 17:14:11

At 11:29 PM 4/3/98 -0500, bob carl wrote:
>why are many postings tied to holiday art? Aren't we at the end of the
>trying to free ourselves from "holiday art" and the like. Let the
>classroom teachers dish
>out that stuff. It ain't for me. How do the rest of you feel ?
i'd like to hear more about this, too. one one hand, i definitely don't
want to be stuck making bunny ears or crosses out of construction paper
this easter. lame holiday projects are the pits. i've also read about how
using holidays as the only time to introduce traditions from other
cultures is implying the cultures' only contributions are fun and
games/frills type stuff; this criticism makes sense to me. i have also been
appalled, in the past as a student and now as a teacher, at how others
assume everyone is Christian and wants to celebrate Christianity.

on the other hand, though, holidays can be lots of FUN and it sometimes
seems we are lacking in this at school. at our school last year (middle
school) halloween was "banned" - no costumes or make up were allowed
supposedly because it was too distracting. i thought this was a huge
bummer. i have also been intrigued to learn about and share the origins of
some holidays with my kids. st. patrick's day, for example - everyone
wears green, but does anyone know why? to me its a little disturbing that
we all participate in something few of us understand or bother to think
about. holidays pose a little critical thinking opportunity...there are
some excellent web resources for "real" holiday info.

in addition, i feel like a dazed moth in my strong attraction to cool
holiday art traditions from non modern mainstream usa. some examples are
the art of pysanky, sort of like batik engraving for eggs (awesome web
sites!), the dias de los muertos figures, chinese new year dragon

i would love to hear if/how others struggle with these issues and what
solutions have been found!


Wendy Sauls
Art Teacher, Kanapaha Middle School, Gainesville, FL
Doctoral Student, Art Education, Florida State University
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