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[teacherartexchange] teacher as artist


From: Randy Menninghaus (india99_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Thu Nov 16 2006 - 03:36:16 PST

Hello I am weighing in from unseasonably warm Maine,

I have been on both sides of this discussion. I've found at the high school
level that students have a higher respect for my art opinion if they
discover that I indeed make art. I don't make art in my classes. Oh, I
have to qualify that:in mid December when the annual teachers fund raiser
comes around and they want a Santa image"pronto" from me, there is sanding
and priming that occurs during the darkness of a video. Now tisk tisk me
all you want, :>) but over time the students became curious. Suddenly 15
years of the Fund raising Santas had gone by and I found my self with an
audience of teachers & students asking "What is the santa going to look
like this year?" during November and December there is a Santa tucked on
the edge of my desk. I rarely get a moment, at Lunch or after school to
work on it. However students see me struggle with figures being positioned,
or watch a face develop that certain twinkle. They seem amazed that brushes
come in those tiny sizes & they also see me making something to give to a
For my students it works well to remind them of the rich craft tradition
that exists in Maine.
My "Fine art" looks completely different from the images of Father Frost
etc. LOL I also post an invitation to the show I am in every year on my
art room wall. I invite all my students to the openning. Since it involves
actually getting organized and going ( which is hard for most teenagers) I
only have one or two students go each year.
Okay I was pretty long and windy on this one. Randy

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