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Lesson Plans

Re: exploratory subjects

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Tue, 13 May 1997 21:15:14 -0400 (EDT)

To S.H. Evans:
I think you have raised a very real concern about the present state of middle
level education. I am not sure what or if there is a research base for the
idea of exploratory classes at the middle school level, but that concept has
been with the m.s. concept ever sicnce I first encountered it about 15 years
ago. Personally, I think that middle school students are ready for an
in-depth experience rather than a highly superficial experience such as is
presently provided. The Wisconsin curriculum guide in Art Ed deals with this
topic on pgs. 114-115 and even includes an area titled "Rethinking Middle
School 'Exploratory' Courses." ) A Guide to Curriculum Planning in Art
Education. Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. In my personal
experience at the middle level, I am appalled at the minimal amount of time I
have per year with the average student. We have 7 week rotations, which
allows time for about three projects, plus some (minimal) art history and
criticism. I do have elective courses as well, but only for non band
students. To my mind, the exploratory concept and the grade level team
concept have done a great deal to minimize art education at the middle level.

Marcia Thompson
West Salem Middle School
West Salem, WI