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Re:[teacherartexchange] New teacher advice


From: Jerry Vilenski (jvilenski_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Aug 02 2009 - 07:57:34 PDT

Whether you are a seasoned classroom teacher or a new teacher entering the art room for the very first time, you would be doing yourself a favor, in my opinion, to chill out and not worry about the following the latest trends in art education right away. Your main task should be to learn the art room and where everything is located, do an extensive mental inventory of supplies and materials, get stuff ordered that you anticipate needing and then start developing an outline of what you are going to teach each grade level.
Keep in mind that art classes are still basically studio experiences for kids, no matter what age, and to try and get too "scientific" with your curriculum right away will put undo stress on you as the teacher as well as the students encountering a new way of doing things. Don't get me wrong, I'm in favor of trying new approaches to teaching art, but if you are new to the process, you really owe it to your students as well as yourself to relax and get to know each other and to develop classroom routines that make things work smoothly.

I am a firm believer in keeping things simple at first, then as you observe the skill level of your students, you can then tailor your program to their strengths as well as their weaknesses. Remember, the kids don't know or for that matter care if you are strictly following the state guidelines or a loyal following of a trend--they are there because they love working with their hands, having fun, and engaging in creative problem solving. Enjoy your year!



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