Today I did my first Artistic Habits Lesson on “Developing Craft” or art making skills.
First off, why I am calling them Artistic Habits, instead of Artistic Behaviors which is what the TAB acronym is based on? Well, School-wide we are doing the “7 Habits of a Successful Student” in our advisory classes, so I wanted to tie in with the Habits word. And the “Behaviors” word at our middle school had such a negative ,connected to bad behavior and student discipline. With my Studio Habits of the Mind, I was leaning towards “Studio Habits” but after a quick poll of a few of my co-workers, I settled on the Artistic Habits name for these lessons.
I planned this lesson this summer and finally got a chance to teach it today.
The Good Stuff: The Art21 short video was very engaging and the kids seemed to like the artwork. We had some good discussions defining and identifying the different art tools, skills and references. A discussion about tracing was inspired by this video as the artist does trace an enlarged projection and he traces part of an album cover. Usually I discourage my students from tracing in the art room, so they found it confusing to see a “famous” artist tracing. It was a good discussion to come up with when and where it would be OK to trace.
The Bad Stuff: The flow chart activity didn’t happen in most all of the classes. But that’s ok. Everyone set a goal of a new skill to learn, but most of them were drawing related. I think this is because it is the only center we have focused on so far and because most kids think art = drawing. The Fall CRUD seems to be sweep through, so 13 kids were absent today throughout my classes. (2-3 per class) I realized I needed a homework version of the lesson for those kids to do. Hopefully it will be a useful activity for them.
Next time: I really like how Art of Apex is doing their Studio Habit Units this year. That might be the way to go in the future. But for now I like the idea of one day lessons with videos and discussions. I just need to figure out at way to get a little more interaction/creative work into the lessons. We did a lot of Think, Pair, Share though with lots of good idea sharing.
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