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Lesson Plans

Re: more to Nancy

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Fri, 12 Jul 1996 10:55:58 -0400

In response to Sharon's question about why the production activity should
I tend to agree because the production activity serves so well as assessment
of the rest of the concepts and skills taught. I always start with a work of
art when designing curriculum. First, I allow for students to experience the
work and verbalize their aesthetic response (which involves description,
initial interpretations, etc. and is therefore the basis for meaningful
criticism once more information is acquired. All of this serves as motivation
for art historical research and drives students to want to be involved in the
research themselves. Since art critics have informed interpretations based on
what they know about the artist and the work as well as other works in art
history to place the work in a context, the most authentic criticism comes
later in a unit. Writing and verbalizing initial reactions (as well as those
along the way) can all lead up to this; criticism can happen throughout the
unit but the most authentic product comes when the students have a fuller
understanding of the work. And then production... As my last message
indicated, I'm going for production activities centered around the main idea
of the work being studied. I'm not looking for a specific product. I want
each individual to have to solve their own problems and think critically. I
want to end up with all unique solutions. For the work to reflect their
understanding of the "big idea", they have to have explored the work
thoroughly. Therefore, production tends to come toward the end. I do,
however, believe it is important to complete exercises (I think of them as
skill-builders) along the way to learn about techniques and processes that
relate to understanding the work. I'll use the word authentic again in
differentiating between the along-the-way activities and culminating
production activities which require the students to engage in authentic
art-making -- making decisions artists have to face every day.

Kathryn Cascio
The Southeast Institute for Education in the Visual Arts