>Subject: Classroom critiques > >I start the children doing critiques in K. We call it, "Having a show" and >it takes up the final 6 or 7 minutes of our 30 minute class. One half of >the class will stand along one wall and hold their pictures up. the other >half has the opportunity to raise a hand and offer a comment. All comments >must begin, "I notice that..." and contain a reference to what we were >trying to do, i.e., if we were trying to use primary colors, a comment >might be, "I notice that Heather used primary colors on her house." I use >this technique as a form of closure and as a wonderful opportunity to get >the children using the language of art. It helps jump-start the process of >teaching them how to see shapes, colors, patterns, use of space. We try to >comment on each piece of art; to this end, each piece is limited to >receiving one comment. When we are pressed for time and they still want to >have a show, I have them stay at their table (there are 5), and each table >will hold up their work, show it 360 degrees, and only one comment is >allowed. As they age, their enjoyment of this activity wanes >(self-consciousness rears its head) and we switch to critiquing the >masters. By then, their technique and vision is in place. I would love to >read more from everyone about how they use this technique.
Sometimes let them critique another grades' display. the younger will learn
from the older (shades of the one-room rural school!) and the older will
benefit from seeing how learning develops--and recognize how much they have
learned--and where they still need to develop skills. I try to pass on the
most perceptive of these comments--even the older ones are flattered
when the younger recognize their skills.
Also it pays to emphasize that these comments are opinions--not absolutes
and different people will have different reactions to the same work.