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Lesson Plans

A&E.O lesson plan on illness

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Megan Evans (evans.484)
Wed, 19 Nov 1997 11:23:15 -0500

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I am creating a lesson plan for high school students that deals with
illness. I think this lesson is important because at some piont in our
lives most all of us will have to deal with our own illnesses or the
illness of a loved one. I realized this when I lost my mother to breast
cancer. Until this time in my life I felt like nothing could hurt me or
anyone I loved. I was wrong. I hope that this lesson will bring
knowledge about different diseases, but also I hope it shows my students
how art is theraputic for many people who struggle with the different

I plan to teach this as an intercirriculum lesson. My sister is a
science teacher and we have collaborated on ideas together. I will
begin my lesson by showing the class slides of three artists work who
deal with three different illnesses (Hannah Wilke-cancer, Frida
Kahlo-infertility/pain from an early childhood accident, and Keith
Haring-AIDS). Then the students will pick an artist that deals with
illness in their work (I will have a list of artists for suggestions).
At the same time in their science class they will be researching the
disease that the artist works with. For the science class they will
write a paper about the illness, and for my class they will create an
artwork, in any medium, that descibes their feelings/emotions about the

emotions about difficult topics through artwork. It will also allow
them to compare the medical aspects of the illness with the emotional
aspects of it. The final part of this lesson will have the students
write about how creating the art was theraputic for them, and write
about the feelings they were trying to express.

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