Thursday, February 16, 2017

Thursday Think Tank: A Day in the Life of an Art Educator!

I just wanted to do a quick run down of what my typical day looks like for all of you!

5:00 am Wake Up, Get Ready, Breakfast, & Hit the Road!

7:15 am Arrive at School Put my Apron on!

As soon as I arrive I put on my apron. I may not always need it, but its like my badge of honor and it helps me keep track of things that I normally set down somewhere and lose. For example the control for the projector, I'm always losing that! I also keep pens, sticky notes and erasers in my pockets just in case.

During this time I also make sure my objectives are correct for the day, change the date/agenda on the board or update any information that needs to be updated.

7:30 am during this time if I have tutoring I am usually helping students with their work or they are working independently. I also take this time to prep materials for the day or cut paper if we're beginning a new project.  During clay season, I'd be loading or unloading the kiln to get it ready for a firing.

8:10 am Bell Rings and students come pouring in!

8:15-11:42 am I have FOUR Art I classes made up of 7th and 8th graders. Art I is our art design course or basically introduction to art. The students learn basic skills, and all about the Elements and Principles of Art.

11:45-12:17 pm LUNCH This year I enjoy having lunch in the Library since it is less crowded than the teachers lounge.

12:20-1:10 pm This is my conference period. I use this time to update grades, put away materials before my afternoon classes, or hang artwork. IF I have time I even update my blog or post on my school Instagram account.

1:13-3:45 pm I have THREE Advanced Art classes this year. Advance Art 3D Design. So we tackle a lot of 3D projects like the Home project, and Altered Books.

3:45 pm My 8th period class usually helps to stack chairs and clean the floor before they leave. In our school we walk all the students out into the main hallway at the end of the day toward their respective exits (Bus Riders, Car Riders, Walkers).

4:00-5:00 pm

Monday I have ART CLUB. This year our name is S.A.S. (Secret Art Society) we help out with Library nights and other activities and events that go on in the school.

Tuesday once a month we have a district Art Department Meeting at one of the middle schools. We meet and share different ideas, lesson plans and talk about district events in which we are participating. I'm excited to share some future projects I'll be involved with this year!

Wednesday is reserved for our weekly staff meetings on campus. This year I am also in charge of

Thursday & Friday I try to go home on time unless a student asks for extra help.

Saturday is my day to relax!

Sunday I try to finish up any lesson plans and also review what I've got planned for the week. I also take this day to make lunches for the week so I don't have to worry about it.

There you have it! I'd say its nothing too special, but it takes a lot of work!

What does your day typically consist of? Comment below!




Monday, February 13, 2017

Monday Mayhem: Altered Books

A little abstract cover carving.

This was done at home!

For all your sneaky phone hiding and charging needs!

"It's a portal."

Check out this habitat!

Altered book with some hidden fossils!

Look at all these altered books!


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Last Minute Field Trip!

At the end of last year (May 2016) one of my students submitted a proposal to our Principal and asked if Advanced Art and Humanities classes could take a trip out to Dallas and tour the galleries around. It was a super fun experience and Mrs. Sterns our Humanities teacher created an amazing scavenger hunt for us all! In total we took about 80 students with 10 chaperones! What a great day!















Tuesday, February 7, 2017

ATPE Middle School Teacher of the Year 2016!

I feel like I'm catching up on a lot, since my blog has been kinda of dead as of late. Last year, not only did I win my campus Teacher of the Year but also the ATPE Middle School Teacher of the Year!

Mr. J who was the ATPE High School Teacher of the Year!

My Principal and I!

Cool award!


Monday, February 6, 2017

Project HOME 2016

Last year students were asked to interpret their idea of "home" into a visual representation. Here are the results.














Thursday, February 2, 2017

Thursday Think Tank: Printmaking Social Issue

Last year I stumbled upon this amazing art teachers Instagram @artofteaching (you can click that link to see it) and she had a great idea for printmaking and was kind enough to email me when I asked her about the process, so all the credit goes to her!

Real Talk: I've never done printmaking with real printing blocks and ink as a teacher in my entire 7 years of previous teaching. In elementary it would have been too expensive to buy materials like that for over 700 students. Since being in middle school, while I have taught basic printmaking skills, I never had the materials for an entire class until this year.

So you can see that I was a little nervous and was glad to have the help of a more experienced teacher for this project.

First I began with my advanced students by simply asking them to discuss what they believed a social issue to be. From there we discussed the different types of social issues and where they fit in within different communities within the globe.

A social issue is a problem that influences a considerable number of individuals within a society. 

The different areas of social issues that we addressed were the following:

1. Self
2. Family/School/Friends
3. City/Community
4. Texas/USA
5. Global

After brainstorming as a whole, the class then spent time drafting a design based on a topic of their own choice. Once they finalized their art, they then rubbed the pencil drawing onto the blocks and began carving. Students were expected to create a test print, a ghost print, and then two final prints. They were also expected to label them correctly as artist prints and then label the Edition on their final prints.



This project was done just before the elections in November, so a lot of these were influenced by politics.

Printing!

Writing an artist statement!
I had many great projects come out of this and I was very impressed by how much my students really cared about these different topics. I am one proud art teacher!


How do you incorporate world topics and issues into your curriculum and how do you create meaningful discussions? Let me know!

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Coping with Seasonal Students

Yesterday I received an email that a student had been withdrawn from school and that he would not be returning.

Even though I never experienced this while growing up, as a teacher I now have 20-30 students every year that arrive and then leave within months. Some of these students return, but the majority I never see again.

Right now I am sitting at my desk and looking at the cabinet thinking about the portfolio filled with art projects that have been left behind. I am thinking to myself,

"What was the last thing that I said to him?"

I am a firm believer that every person enters our lives for a specific purpose. You don't know what they are going through, you don't know the family problems they might have or their academic struggles. That being said I try to make the best of the time that I do have with them. I try to treat every student with respect and dignity, even if they can seem challenging at first. I think to live my life this way not only shows anyone who crosses my path that they are worth respect, but that they deserve to be treated like a decent human being.

The last time I saw this student was after school on Friday. He was waiting for his bus. I asked him how his week had been, what he was going to do when he got home. I asked him what his favorite class was and how he was doing grade wise. He mentioned to me that it was math, that he enjoyed being with that teacher, and he felt he was doing better than before. I said I was proud of him and shook his hand and I remember him smiling, looking proud of himself.

That is how I will remember him. I hope that he remembers that I encouraged him and treated him with respect, even if it was only for a small period of time.

As an art teacher, my position in a students life teeters on being a content teacher and counselor of sorts. I have the privileged of  being a listener, encourage, an advocate. This is what I remind myself of, especially when some of the students I teach are only here for a season.

How do you cope with students that leave? What do you hope they take with them as they go?