Last spring, I watched my fourth grade student David part with his eyes. It wasn’t easy; he’d grown pretty attached to them. David had spent an entire class period with a hunk of Crayola quick-dry clay, sculpting. His eyes represented “anger” – an emotion David feels a lot, and one he’s learning how to express […]
“My job is not to produce answers. My job is to produce good questions.” ~Glen Lignon, contemporary artist When I first told my students we were going to be studying contemporary artists to help us think about teaching, they were understandably perplexed. My students, who are high school seniors interested in becoming teachers, wondered (a) […]
More than four-hundred people held hands. They formed a human chain from Seymour School, through the playground, across the parking lot between Nojaim’s grocery store and the community health center, in front of the public housing buildings, alongside Gifford drug store, past the purple house with the plastic swans, down the sidewalk by the industrial […]
On the last Monday morning of the DECATS camp I walk across St. Theresa’s Catholic School campus with a knot in my stomach and my head throbbing with anxiety. Failure seems assured in all three of my classes. I am teaching two “big project” classes, Sand Power and Gears and Gravity, and most of my […]
Much like my 21st century students, I’m drawn to artwork that uses video, animation, and sound. Not only do these works pull us in with movement, they engage our curiosity. With my own growing interest in video art I have come across some very interesting work done by contemporary artists. What I found encouraged me […]
Art and human development students at Massachusetts College of Art & Design (MassArt), 2013 When I am not on the road engaged in professional development with teachers and teaching artists, I am at a state-funded art school in Boston, Massachusetts working with graduate and undergraduate students who aspire to careers as artists who teach. Our […]
In encouraging my students to embrace an arts integrated pedagogy in their future classrooms, I’ve been forced to recognize and acknowledge their anxiety about making art and facilitating arts-based lessons. This has left me pondering a question that kept surfacing throughout the year: Do you have to be an “artist” to make art?
I have unique task for a teaching artist: I am supposed to work with a group of fourth graders who have particularly intense behavior struggles to improve their overall classroom behavior. While arts integration is generally used to help students access core academic content like math, science, and reading, our class employs visual arts integration to target social emotional objectives – like being able to express oneself, and working safely and successfully as a group.