Should every art class involve MAKING art?

Discussion in 'Art Teachers' started by Alyssa Meade, Jan 18, 2019.

  1. Alyssa Meade

    Alyssa Meade New Member

    Jan 18, 2019
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    Jan 18, 2019

    This is my second year teaching elementary art, and I only get 25 minutes with each class. Not to mention I am between 5 schools and on a cart at 3 of them. Up until now, I have killed myself to make sure the biggest portion of my class is MAKING art, not talking about it. I am afraid I'm not TEACHING about art enough. As a professional artist myself, I adore all the technical aspects of making art and I love passing it on. But it is exhausting to do a project 9+ times a day (going over materials, handing it all out, giving instructions, helping with the project, and cleaning up in 25 minutes).
    So in the end, I am absolutely wearing myself out prepping an insane amount of materials to create art every class, and trying to transport it from school to school. There are a lot of Standards that lend more to a classic classroom teaching style, with less hands on activities, but I am afraid to bore the students and make them lose interest.
    I have to have a good selection of student artwork finished by the end of the year for an art show, and I only see each class about 15 times the whole year. I would ideally like to have some classes making and some not. So my question is:
    Do you have any classes that are purely teaching about art related topics with no art making? How you keep the student's interest?
  3. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

    Jun 14, 2013
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    Jan 25, 2019

    25 minutes is tough.

    I don't teach art, but our art teacher teaches lessons on blending, perspective, and the color wheel. Many of these lessons are more content-focused and use very basic supplies such as paper, pencil, and markers. The students are engaged because it's still hands on. She's also taught lessons that are mainly reading a children's book to the class and discussing the illustrations and techniques the illustrator used. It seems that would be very doable in 25 minutes. One that sticks in my mind is "The Day the Crayons Quit."
    readingrules12 likes this.
  4. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

    Nov 16, 2014
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    Jan 25, 2019

    On a cart is tough enough. Considering 25 min class AND a mandatory art show at the end of the year, and you are pretty much stuck running a craft class rather than art education. I feel for you.
    No, you do not have to make art all the time. Some things I do to engage them when we are not making art:
    Art centers - a variety of art activities at each center (ie: art go fish, art memory). Rotate every x min.
    Art Kahoot. Just use some that are already public and on the web.
    Wordfinds and Crosswords with art vocabulary. Generators make it easy.
    Critique day. Sharing art and getting feedback from class using art vocabulary. I use 2 colors of sticky notes - one for writing a positive, the other for writing a suggestion.
    Movies. "Getting to Know" series of artist DVD's are expensive but a good investment.
  5. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

    Feb 4, 2010
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    Jan 26, 2019

    You can definitely include learning about the aspects of art and art appreciation in addition to creating art. They gave you a crazy schedule and what you could do with 1 hour, you can't do with 25 minutes. Just handing out and collecting supplies take up too much time.
    IS there a way your schedule could change for next year?
    otterpop likes this.
  6. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

    Jul 19, 2014
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    Jan 31, 2019

    At your grade level, yes, making art is going to be expected. That said, however, I would point out that sometimes in that experience, there is prep that can be "doing: something, while also teaching/talking about why the art was made, it's significance or place in history, how complicated some art was to make, therefore its cultural meaning, etc. Not every class is going to produce something that can go home with the student the same day, which is to be expected with your time constraints. One thing every student should learn is that quality often requires consideration and continued work over multiple sessions. In other words, patience is taught, combating the tendency to expect instant gratification. I can only hope that by teaching patience, it will carry over to other activities in their lives.
  7. RussianBlueMommy

    RussianBlueMommy Comrade

    Apr 15, 2016
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    Feb 6, 2019

    I am in a LTS position for 8th grade art and we are starting on color theory. There was a bit of note taking today about the primary, secondary, and tertiary colors and then they colored a color wheel for their notes. Tomorrow we will be doing a project with shaving cream and food coloring, maybe Friday.
  8. Savannah Toliman

    Savannah Toliman New Member

    Jul 16, 2019
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    Jul 17, 2019

    Well Not Every, I remember when I was in 8th I usually avoid going to the art class, But one they the Teacher show us that art is not about sketches and diagrams. The art of learning and writing is also a form of art. And some how I started taking interest in Korean and choose it as a major subject of learning which changed by life and give me a stable Career option.

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