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Lesson Plans

Re: 1 Computer Art room

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Sandra Hildreth (shildret)
Wed, 01 Oct 1997 22:51:10 -0400

I've got 4 Macintosh computers now, but for several years I just had 1.
Whenever I could, I would get a couple of students over to the computer
and give them a quick intro to SuperPaint. Usually they would be kids
who finished a project early, or demonstrated that they clearly
undersood some technique or skill. I would give them a little time to
experiment and learn the tools - and a pair works good because they talk
to each other about what they are doing and make suggestions. Then I
would give them a specific task, most often similar to what the rest of
the class was doing with regular art media. For example, a color wheel.
For experienced computer users, it would seem a waste of time, but for
beginners, they learn how to create a single blank shape, repeat it 12
times and arrange it somehow, then use their visual discrimination to
choose from the palette of 256 basic colors, the 12 that are most
appropriate for the color wheel. We don't print them out - I explain
they look better on the screen anyway and the color ink cartridge is
expensive! What I think is important, is that children learn how to
control the technology - to make it do what they want to produce (which
is why I help out and assign tasks). If you just let them play and make
whatever neat shapes and patterns the computer is programmed to make,
it's no different than giving kids crayons everyday and telling them to
draw whatever they want. They eventually get bored, don't ever try
anything new, and don't learn any new skills. Oh, and when 1 pair has
completed their task, I send a new student over and set up peer
instruction. Through the course of the school year, just about everyone
gets several computer opportunities.
Sandra Hildreth
C.L.A.S.S. (Cultural Literacy through Art & Social Studies)
Art 7-12, Madrid-Waddington Central School, Madrid, NY 13660
Art Methods, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY 13617