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Re: [teacherartexchange] Elementary portfolios?

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From: M. Austin (whest177_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Thu Aug 04 2005 - 15:59:48 PDT


I am in 2 towns, 3 buildings, 4 classrooms daily, so while I don't have the
number of students some of you do, I do have time management challenges! *L*
I have appx. 150 K-6 students. Each class has a stack of portfolios, each
with their names on them. I pass these out at the beginning of class (super
quick & easy, cause I stack them by table). All work in progress is in their
portfolios. I display artwork by class, and when I take the display down I
hand the artwork back and students put them in their portfolios. I learned
this method of using portfolios when I was student teaching - I had around
600 student then, and it was super easy to manage. For storage, when I was
on a cart I had the classroom teacher store them in their classroom. In my
own classroom I stack them, open side up, on a bookshelf. All artwork stays
in the portfolio until the end of school (the exception being 3-D work,
which goes home after being displayed). I create a color sheet which I xerox
on 11x14" paper - these contain a color wheel, examples of line, shape,
textures, etc. The students glue these on their portfolio and use them as
reference throughout the year.

I understand how it could become a logistical nightmare if you try to manage
the portfolios yourself, but if you teach the students how you want them to
use them the students will do an excellent job. They take ownership in their
portfolios. I like them because when it's time for special exhibits (the
ones where I choose the artworks) I can just skim through the portfolios and
pull out the artwork I need. It always amazes me the excitement the students
generate when I tell them at the end of the year that their portfolios are
going home that day - and because they have a way to transport their artwork
so it doesn't get messed up, wrinkled, smooshed in the bookbag - the
students tend to hang on to them. Each person has to find what works for
them tho - but this works for me! :-)
~Michal
K-12 Kansas Art Teacher
http://www.geocities.com/theartkids

> Hi Michal,
>
> I'm wondering how many students you have? How do you store the portfolios?
> Do you still periodically display students' work? and then put it back in
> the portfolios? Do you keep all their work in the portfolios, or does
> some go home before the end of the year? I know people talk about doing
> this, but having almost 700 students and a severe lack of storage space,
> it seems like a logistical nightmare.

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