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This seems to be a hot button issue. I followed on the heels of a teacher who
did fun crafts and every child was successfull. All the work looked alike! Many
in the school mourned her leaving and wanted "fun 'n easy" theme related
projects such as holidays. As you know, the New York State Standards for the
arts don't encourage teachers to have students all make the same origami fish
and put glitter on it. As I taught to the standards, students complained about
how much fun Mrs. Glitter had been. I stuck to my guns, incorporating higher
order thinking, reflection, visual and written literacy, aesthetics, etc along
with an emphasis on art making. Voila! At the end of the year most every child
was painting with skill and gusto, had good ideas about art and its meaning for
them. Knew how to draw beautifully from observing real objects and people (not
the pokemon cartoons they all brought in at the beginning of the year). It took
the whole 10 months, but it was worth it. As I start the new year, I have a
nice foundation to build on. Perhaps Mr. Mat and others who think they know
what art teaching is could be educated to the standards we are asked to meet by
NAEA (Get a poster, put it up in your room, do an in-service for teachers, copy
an article about learning in and through art - which does not mean that
science, math etc. are served by art). This year I plan to offer an after
school art program for teachers. Even if only one shows up, it could build.
Together they and I will figure out how to incorporate art across the
curriculum. Have a wonderful year and work on making Mr. Mat a devoted convert!
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Fri Aug 18 2000 - 09:57:58 PDT