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Lesson Plans

Re: Spectra Visual Arts Curriculum

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
J. Pease (jpease)
Mon, 21 Oct 1996 16:26:04 -0700

>Has anybody out there used any part of the Spectra Visual Arts
>curriculum that is distributed through Dale Seymour Publications?
>I would like to know what art teachers (and others) think of it.
>What are the pros and cons? Please indicate the grade level that this
>program has been used with, how long you have been using this
>program, how frequently you use it, any adaptations that you have made
>to the program and why.
>thanx for your help!

Dear w.f.

I used Spectra years ago when I was a traveling art teacher. Now I am a
resource specialist. I will jump right into the subject and trust that my
overenthusiastic approval will be corrected by teachers who do not share my
view. There are several commercial curricula in the field, and of all of
them, I prefer Spectra. The main reason is that it is affordable and
self-contained. A teacher needs only the grade-level binder and does not
need to purchase a book for every child in the classroom. The written
material is supported by slides, and that is the only reservation I have
with the program. The teacher needs to have access to a slide projector,
and I know that for some teachers that is a draw back. One can purchase a
set of prints which also correlates with the binder lessons - but the
prints are not laminated and cost extra. The basic program comes only with
slides. The lessons themselves are quite good - the 7th and 8th grade
binders are even better than the K-6 binder, as they are more recent in
publication and reflect new trends in Discipline-Based Art Education.

However, once I say the above, I feel I have to add that I feel Spectra is
very good for a basic start. I also feel that a teacher needs to add to
that program in order to keep it up to date. Lessons based on local
resources and lessons that might be more advanced with regard to
comprehensive art education can and should replace the Spectra lessons, as
the teacher continues to teach. Spectra is a good basic program, and in my
opinion, perhaps the best on the market for the beginning teacher - but
once a program is published, it is already to an extent out of date, and I
think this fact should be kept in mind. Did I answer your question?

Jill Pease
Program Specialist
California Consortium for Visual Arts Education
Sacramento Institute

  • Reply: Becky Alexander: "Re: Spectra Visual Arts Curriculum"