For me it depends on the grade. In K, I focus on introducing and handling
media, shapes, color mixing, lines. We do a lot of collage, painting (always
with primary colors to mix the color they want) and drawing. In 1st grade,
most of our projects have taken two weeks to complete. The work has been
very interesting....they have done water color washes, paper sculptures,
collages, etc. Now they are working on paintings based on a field trip to
the Natural History Musuem. 2nd-5th grades are working on extended but
different kinds of art. Last year I spent many weeks on projects and I found
the kids got bored and had trouble keeping going (especially the younger
students) This year I found by using smaller paper (12" x 18" and 9"x12")
and making my objectives more concise, I am getting better understanding of
the media and concepts presented and the artwork is showing more thought.
Even using smaller papaer, the students (especially older students) will
spend two and three class periods working on even a small lesson.
I do spend the time on lessons that need the time. But I try to mix it up
with color studies or drawings that take one class period. This way they
learn to work more quickly but more efficiently.