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Lesson Plans

RE: artist as teacher vs. teacher

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Sears, Ellen (
Mon, 27 Oct 1997 11:34:06 -0500

> Michelle,
I am an art teacher that tries to volunteer in my boys' classes
during the year too. I have had one or two experiences like the one you
described. When that happens, I try to talk to the student about their
way completing the project...
"What a great idea - I was thinking of this - but I like what
you did too..."
"How are ours alike? How are they different?" Hopefully by
modeling, the class room teacher might learn something, too.

If it is a structural problem - like working with clay - you may
want to point it out, and talk about what might happen...

The teachers always stay in the room, even though I am certified
and comfortable in the situation, they really should be able to discuss
the how and why of what we did.

What are the benefits? Hopefully the flexible thinking will
transfer to all subject areas. In math (my other subject area) it is
important to realize that there are many ways to get to 'the right
answer'. Sometimes there isn't one answer... sometimes there isn't any
way to check for correctness, but check for reasonableness (!) of the
answer. Many times there are different ways to read a question. This
type of thinking should really be thought of as the classroom norm.
But unfortunately it isn't.

Why continue? Not every teacher is like that - my husband and I
taught our son's preschool class Friday - a bottle biology eco structure
and some clay projects. We were talking about the mess - and the way
some teachers handle it... it led to a discussion on papermaking. The
preschool teachers said that the teachers do it every spring with their
classes. Guess when it started? When I did it with my oldest's (now a
6th grader) class when he was in preschool.

So, don't stop going... and keep modeling.