Monday, October 29, 2012

Integration Thoughts

Just wrapping up a big unit on Cubist art, using tempera paint with the fourth graders. It was an integration with geometry, at the request of several fourth grade teachers. We started out by answering the question, "What is Cubism?", then moved on to the art of Charles Demuth, and particularly, "I Saw the Figure 5 in Gold". I asked the students to draw a number that represents them and randomly put at least 5 ruler lines across their composition. We did a pre-assessment of geometry concepts/terms, then spent the next 3 weeks painting. I started the students off with mixing at least 2 secondaries from primaries, then let them try tints, shades, and tertiaries (if so desired). Then, I found a wonderful 4th grade geometry lesson at Smarttech and used that to review all the types of lines, angles, and shapes that they could find in their art. Students put tracing paper over their completed paintings, and traced/labelled at least 3 of the terms, plus completed a reflection. Finally, all was collected, and we did the post-assessment. Now, I just need to collate and grade all 440 (220 pre, 220 post)! So, how do I feel about all this? I like showing connections between art and other content areas, but then, I dislike giving up any art making time for testing. I am hopeful that the data will show that this was helpful, which would be a vindication of all the effort I put into this (meeting with 4th grade teachers, finding geometry resources and making them accessible in my once a week, 45 minute art class, not letting the studio time get away from us, etc.). It is stressful to catch students up who are absent, some classes will miss due to a field trip, other time management issues that crop up on integrations like this. Some other folks thoughts on integrating the arts are HERE and HERE.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

School Starts and Art Apps
So far, a busy and productive start to the year. All summer, I have been playing around with an iPad for  both art creation and assessment investigations. The links above are from two amazing art teachers, and the lists are very concise for art education apps.
A few assessments apps I would add are Easy Assessment and Data Tracker.
It seems like I have been busier than usual, partly because of piloting new evaluation policies in the art room, but also because I am doing a design challenge-- making a piece of art every day. I've been documenting it on my other blog,  More Art 24/7 . I've really enjoyed the creative commitment, even after a long day of teaching. I would encourage any busy, stressed- out teacher to give themselves a similar intellectual space to challenge themselves. After all, we ask our students to challenge themselves every day, right?

The Sketchbook Project

The Sketchbook Project: 2011

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The journey of process intrigues me and I am always changing it up.

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