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Re: [teacherartexchange] important concepts to teach kids

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From: M. Austin (whest177_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Tue Jul 19 2005 - 16:03:16 PDT


I know that in my elementary program I am required to incorprate reading and
math into my lessons. I find this extremely easy to do by teaching the
p&e's. When teaching line you teach parallel lines, which is a math concept.
Shape encompasses geometric and irregular. I am not changing the lessons
themselves, but incorproating the required concepts and vocabulary. By the
time my students reach middle school they have a firm understanding of these
concepts and I then focus my middle school students on experimenting with
mediums and beginning to allow them more choices in their own art making. My
high school students are then encouraged to focus on their own interests
within the assignments. I think that if you don't give the students a
foundation on which to build they will forever struggle. I know I would get
frustrated when I'd get an A on an art project and I would want to know
why - what made it better than any other painting, and I'd never get a
specific answer. I look back on that painting in question, and I discovered
that one thing that made it a strong painting was a strong use of
complementary colors. Or when I'd struggle to draw something I perceived as
a circle, but would actually be an oval due to perspective. I was never
taught formal perspective, how to break down objects into simple shapes, how
to achieve specific colors. I learned more my elementary student teaching
semester about art than through any other experience. Once I understood
these basic concepts I was comfortable growing in my own artistic endevors.
So while I understand the urges by many to allow the freedom to create on
their own, there are many students who may get left behind (like me) who get
left behind because they need that formal explaination. That's my .02
anyways (cause that's what it's worth) :-)
~Michal
K-12 Kansas Art Teacher
http://www.geocities.com/theartkids

> I am moving away from concepts such as line, shape, color, balance,
> emphasis,
> repetition.
>
> I am beginning to move to larger concepts such as: Who am I? What is my
> story?
> What makes me special? What questions do I have about life? What art
> work do I
> like and why? Why make art, at all? Why do good things happen to bad
> people?
> Why are some people poor? Why are some people rich?

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