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Re: [teacherartexchange] Fw: Online Art Class

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From: Patricia Knott (pknott_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Aug 26 2006 - 10:07:35 PDT


On Aug 25, 2006, at 6:05 PM, dianegregory@grandecom.net wrote:

>
> Put Orwellian thoughts aside...education is changing and there will
> always be a need for professional educators in all fields. The
> role may change. But we should embrace change and not fear it.

The question is not fear of changing, adapting or meeting the needs
of the current times. San D and I are thinking about the same
thing--- taxpayer referendum. School budgets that are open to public
scrutiny and the proverbial "why do we need to pay for art." To
be perfectly honest the entire high school curriculum could be
replaced with on-line courses, if we had any notion that students
would complete the courses faithfully and honestly. I don't think
any of us are ready to see art go on-line. We ARE willing to
investigate the possibilities , but pay particular attention to the
motivation.

I totally see the practicality of the "on-line" for those students
with "circumstances"-- they can't be in a physical school place for
one reason or another. It's an alternative. And go for developing
the alternatives, but

But I think San D and I are justifiably paranoid about profit making
companies dangling the carrot and then making off with the cake.
Don't I see in my dreams school board meetings where it is not about
teachers and programs , but salesmen and jingle jangle. Here's the
scenario I envision:

      The computer art class cost $30,00-40,000 to set up and equip.
It requires tech support away from important stuff like Math. The
teacher cost is x dollars. It will require upgrading before you can
yawn.
      I can give you a program for so much and so much per student
and the teacher sits at home and monitors. No benefits, no room, no
maintenance. And most of them will get their art credit. And by the
way , I can give you programs for art appreciation courses so they
get their credit.
And who sees to the quality of these programs?

Orwellian indeed. Paranoid for sure.

Hey, my Why Man Creates class is perfect for on-line. I would love to
have the time and energy to market it not only for high school but
college. Would I give it anybody for $500.00.????????????

> Our roles have changed throughout the years. Art educators must
> jump in and find out how they can play a part in this changing
> environment...1984 was 22 years ago...it hasn't happened yet...
>
I think educators more than most have seen and responded to changes.
I just started another year and it was another new initiative. But
those changes have to do with how kids learn and how we best respond
to that. The information about the brain is what has changed since
1984. Using the computer accommodates only a little of the brain
information. We can never go too far one way or another on any side.
What we can do is moderate, adjust and make best choices. I've
participated in a lot of on-line course and I what I miss most is
the teacher's look, body language or inflection that can never be
felt on the computer. And sometimes that look or can make all the
difference. There is no Tim from Project Runway putting a finger
aside the face and saying uhhhhmm carry on.... Now don't say we can
do video conferencing and web cams. We are not there yet ! We can
help get there, but only if teacher knowledge is respected and not
abused, exploited and taken for "cheap" granted.

Patty
(p.s. Diane, I think we have talked enough that you know I'm a
techie, but also an impassioned teacher. And a former business person
who knows how they take advantage of the well intentioned.)

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