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Lesson Plans

Re: Back to School

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
KPRS (kprs)
Fri, 09 Aug 1996 04:55:20 -0700

Debbie Zafereo wrote:
> Well folks, today was our first inservice day and the art teachers got
> to meet this afternoon.
> Middle school teachers got the news that our YAM exhibition will be
> juried this year. We got the impression that it won't be easy to change
> the administrators' minds.
> I've seen great articles as to why middle school students don't need to
> be in juried shows. My problem is that I need some to cite by next
> Monday. I'm going to search all weekend, but school starts Wednesday
> (!!!!!), and I have LOTS to do.
> Does anyone have anything that might be suitable? Can anyone reassure us
> that it's not as terrible as we've always believed? I would appreciate
> any help.
> Thanks,
> Debbie Zafereo
> Corpus Christi, TX

Have you asked the kids? Their reality is ultimately what our reality
is: and that is "judging" goes on constantly from the moment you get up
and look in the mirror to when you watch the olympics on tv. It does not
necessarily have to be a "bad" thing, especially in the context of self
knowledge and aesthetic criticism. I know we would like to shelter
ourselves as well as our kids from a hurtful experience with reference to
our art, however, we must strive to have our kids reach their highest
inner artistic goals, by giving the the tools to know how to do that.
(What does that mean?....Well if for example a kid does a linoleum print,
and has used the materials effectively, challenged himself to make an
artistic statement, and can validate his intentions.....we should be able
to teach him that he has reached the highest inner standards, and
"judging" by another human is based on THAT human's standards not on the
ARTIST's standards). (And some days you win, and some days you lose, but
on all days you should be proud of what you have accomplished.)

Judging and winning is also a way that non art people, such as
administrators, have a way of validating your program. It may not be
fair, it just is. You see, they don't know how to categorize us, so they
have to use their own standards, which is probably some cheezy ribbon. I
could tell you stories about the juried shows my kids have entered, with
good attitudes and have not cared whether they won, but were proud to
enter. (My kids have traditionally shook up shows, that has been "our"
style the last 20 years--if interested ask about the student of mine who
made ART IN AMERICA, because his piece was juried into a show, and then
thrown out the first night because it was sponsored by Philip Morris and
it was an ANTI SMOKING statement---go figure)

San D