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Lesson Plans


Re: Wanted: Art teachers who actually make art...

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Bunki Kramer (bkramer.ca.us)
Wed, 4 Dec 1996 21:00:41 -0800


Hi....Ditto on just about everything Sandra said! I teach middle school 6-8
grade art and 98 % of my time goes directly to TEACHING art in the
classroom.
I have also shown in art galleries in the past and sold pieces but I had to
finally choose where my true commitment lies...production or teaching. One
has to take precedence over the other when you get right down to the
nitty-gritty... at least in my case. But I also consider the fact of
occasionally sitting down to do the same project alongside my students as
another form of teaching. When I do this, it definitely validates, in their
minds, the artwork they are doing. "If SHE'S doin' it, it must be
worthwhile!" In the beginning I feared I would have 35 little copies of my
work, but I was happily mistaked. They never have copied what I have done
and I am amazed at their creativity and different points of view other than
the way I see things! I KEEP learning right along with them!!! That's what
makes teaching fun for me!!! And if I'm having fun, so do they!!! I, also,
don't generally finish my projects (which works for me as well because I
can use them as samples of works-in-production for the same project in
future classes). Do I get frustrated not having finished pieces? Not yet.
The process, to me, is more fulfilling inside than seeing it finished.
Besides, I usually never feel "finished" with my artwork anyway...there's
always something I want to change or add! Do the kids get intimidated
seeing my work next to theirs? I really haven't felt that from them...they
LOVE to see what MY work looks like and that I feel comfortable and
confident in letting them see it!! It makes them feel comfortable and
confident about their work too. I've found it to be a very "bonding"
experience...we all were doing basically the same things....TOGETHER!

And, like Sandra, I also personally know one art teacher in another
district (I observed his classes one day) who does his own watercolor
paintings in his classroom...middle school...and the students are left to
their own devices without a teacher's guidance. I felt so sorry for the
kids and saw the high level of frustration on their faces. They were all
doing the SAME watercolor painting from the SAME ditto picture he gave to
each and every student. He was in another world completely and got
frustrated when a student would venture up to his desk with a question. The
observation brought home to me the fact that teachers need to be readily
accessable for quality learning to take place and a teacher has to make
some true choices in teaching styles for learning to "happen". Besides,
when I get into MY right-brain side, I hate to leave it and get angry when
I'm forced to move out of it before I'm ready! That would not make me a
happy, healthy, wonderful teacher!!!!! That would make me a mean, old bat!
Hummmmm...maybe that's why they call me the old bat! Naw..just kidding!
Remember...I teach middle school. EVERYONE'S an old bat!!!!!!!!!

Just another viewpoint!......Cya

Bunki Kramer
bkramer.ca.us