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[teacherartexchange] Reflection on Lesson Plans (from one of Marvin's students)


From: Judy Decker (judy.decker_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Mon Feb 12 2007 - 10:47:57 PST

Dear Art Educators,

I have been "talking" to one of Marvin Bartel's former students.....
I will just call him Mark as I didn't ask to post his words, but I am
sure it is OK with him.

Mark was very complimentary of Incredible Art Department and does use
the site for inspiration.... but he did close with these comments
(Marvin, you taught him well).

From Mark:

One thing about your site that bothers me.. There's not enough reading
or planning having to do with non-image flooding lessons, and how to
teach creativity in the classroom - and where the arts can do that
where no other subject can... Now I know there is a lot of different
pedagogical stances about how to teach art - but all I see is "how to"
lessons, or this is the finished project lesson that helps kids use a
colored pencil or brush better. Why does that matter to a child if all
they learn is how to manipulate media? Where is the life application?
Just some thoughts, what do you personally think?

Well... I could have said "That is what Marvin's site is for '' (smile)

But this was my response:

I have tried to add some "Marvin-isms" to lessons when I remember.
I personally AM inspired by images I have seen... with all of my favorite
works, an image I saw somewhere inspired it.
Yes - I was an image "flooder" - but never allowed kiddos to copy. I found
that if I didn't provide inspiration for my students, many would sit there
and do nothing. Those who had their own ideas just took off with the
assignments and approached it in their own way. In my later years of
teaching, I provided much more choice - that just isn't written in the
lesson plan - plans that were written to please administrators. If I had
"met" Marvin earlier in my career, things may have been quite a bit
different. I "met" him on Getty list in 1999 - never met him in person.

Unfortunately - it is the "How to" lessons that most users of the site are
looking for.... they want the easy answers.

I wish more educators would have contact with a wise professor like Marvin
For those of you who have not explored Marvin's site:

If I thought teachers would really read my own lesson plans.... I
would rewrite all of them (smile)..... but right now I have other
priorities. I will try to remember to add more "Marvin-isms" into
lessons I add to Incredible Art Department.

I did invite Mark to join our online community. I think he has a lot to share.

(note to Mark - hope you got down this far.... You can teach many.
There are some new teachers out there who will listen to how your way
of teaching works for you. I am also a member of the TAB Choice list
serve and advocate that method of teaching on the other lists, too)

>> One thing about your site that bothers me..

Yes, it does bother me too..... the lessons with the big ideas just
take so much longer to write.... and I often wonder if my word are
ever read.


Judy Decker
Incredible Art Department
Incredible Art Resources

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