If discussing topics (like lesson content issues) that relate to the
teachers engaged in a more academic form of art education would make our
list "sparse," as you say, then perhaps it is a mistake for you to
assume "we are all professionals." I think it is safer to say that there
is wide spectrum of professionalism in the teaching field. I am
interested in moving the median of that continuum of professionalism.
I was not advocating that completely detailed lesson plans (like those
we wrote to get our teaching licenses) be the answer to one person's
innocent request. I tried to make it clear that I was responding to the
general nature of the type of request and how it evoked for me a larger
issue: this long-standing curricular problem (substance-free art
activities). I have received incredible support for stating my concerns
around this issue, off list.
Why did my suggestion of a theme-based unit for spring such as, "flowers
through time" make you laugh? I think you misunderstood the suggestion.
What I mean when I say "there are plenty of still life paintings of
flowers from way back when (meaning the middle ages, Renaissance, etc.)
to Warhol and beyond (meaning to cover any artist more recent than
Warhol in addition to Warhol). It seems you thought my theme was to end
during the 60s. My theme, was to teach art history via changes in floral
imagery through time.
Of course, Warhol was known for so many other things (good and bad--I
lived in New York when he was falling from glory and when he died), but
he still made a series of huge photo-silkscreen florals in his large
body of work. His florals, IMHO, would be very kid-friendly, which is
why he first to came to mind.
I was leaving the choice of artists up to the intelligence of the
teacher who asked the question, should she choose to put together a unit
based on this theme. Others may have replied off list, but I have not
seen any other suggestions offered to her on list.
In your response about my inclusion of Warhol, were you questioning my
knowledge of art? It seems you were taking a statement of mine, out of
context, and using it to discredit me or my suggestion. *If* that is the
case, I would hardly call it professional.
Please be more clear in your statements; this medium lacks tonality,
body language and facial gestures, which have been researched and shown
to comprise 90+% of our spoken conversation. All we have via e-mail, as
you know, is written words. It helps, for the sake of clarity, to choose
As for why I don't contribute more to this list as a three year
participant (first, was that a personal attack?), the reason is exactly
as you described about lengthy lesson plans: it's a matter of time. I
teach full-time, am a devoted wife and mother, am at grad school
(full-time this term), and was just appointed to our state's art
education association's council board, in addition to running a
freelance business. I am very hard working, well respected and
I will contribute to this list when and how often I choose, as time
permits, especially when the topic at hand is more "global" in terms of
advancing art education quality and art education professionalism..
Maggie White wrote:
> M.Grosspietsch wrote:
> > Having stated my disclosure, my response to this type of question (which
> > has been asked hundreds of times), is this: Are you asking for lessons
> > about "spring" and just not stating the art concepts you intend to
> > teach, or are you asking for lessons about "spring" just to kill time?
> > I just want to put in my two cents that I think it's important that we
> > continue to teach art concepts, whether "spring" or some other seasonal
> > activity is taking place.
> I think it's safe to assume that when we ask for ideas, we will be
> plugging in any number of concepts when we finally present them to our
> classes. We're all professionals, and a creative bunch at that, and I'm
> sure most of us _adapt_ the many great ideas from the list to suit our
> objectives and students. If we were compelled to send our lesson ideas
> to the list with complete objectives, standards tie-ins, materials list,
> rubrics, etc., this list would be pretty sparse--who's got time to type
> all that in?
> You say you've been on the list for three years; why don't you contribute
> more often? We always like fresh perspectives.
> <snip> there are plenty of still life paintings of flowers from way
> > back when to Warhol and beyond.
> This made me laugh! Warhol only goes back to the 50s and 60s, and his
> claims to fame weren't even based on still lifes of flowers.