This student was in a group of boys at the drawing center trying to do still-life for the first time. They had been playing with my box of bones, bottles and stuffed toys that I have for still-life and trying to draw them. But not very successfully, they were mostly just playing with the cool new stuff they had not seen before. (Since I know this is part of the process, I let it go for a certain amount of time, as it was not damaging the items and they were not disrupting other tables.) Eventually, I went over… told them that they needed to get drawing soon and also I referred them to the pages in our textbook about still-life and finally explained that their goal was to use value to show the 3-D forms of the objects. This one was struggling as much as the rest, but went home, found some videos on YouTube that he watched and came back the next day with this amazing drawing in his sketchbook. All the other boys were super impressed and convinced him to enter it into our district contest. I reminded him and all the other boys that he just added 2 boosts to the project, the “enter a contest boost” and the “learn a new skill by watching a video boost”. He had also documented one of our conversations and earned the “conference with the teacher boost”. Thus making his 15 point drawing into a 30 point drawing.
This student has a lot of special needs and usually refuses to work. He spent the whole week in sculpture center and once I instructed him on the safe use of the hot glue gun, he was able to bring several projects to a finished state. He was super excited about them and quickly documented with photos so he could take them home. (This is a strict rule for the sculpture center… Nothing goes home unless it has been photographed.) He will likely be incapable of doing the points tracking because of his major organizational issues and low writing skills. Because of this, I will do weekly conferences with him to help him track his points so he gets full credit for all his successes. In more teacher directed lessons, he will act out and disrupt others or hide and avoid working. There was not a second of class this whole week where he was not fully engaged! What a win!
This girl is one of my naturally talented, personally motivated and artistic 7th graders. She jumped right into level 5 in the paint center; she has painted a lot at home and frequently chooses paint when that is an option in our theme assignments. It is clearly her medium! Not only did she do a great job on this pointillism piece, she inspired and taught several other kids in the process. She also so clearly documented her boost points, that I used her as an example when reviewing how to document boost points. She turned this 25 point project, which took her 3 class periods, into a 45 point project.
What are some of your center dos and don’ts?
How do your students inspire eachother while working in the studio setting?