SchoolArts Magazine

DEC 2008

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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discussed how the actual shape of the vessel could reveal much about the artist. Throughout this three-week project, I had students do gallery walks in the artroom, where they could view each other's works-in-progress. These gallery walks allowed students to inspire one another, prompted them to ask each other questions regarding their projects, and troubleshoot problems encountered with their vessels. I also had students view and discuss the assessment sheet about a week before the project was due to see if they needed to add anything or make any last-minute changes. around you. I prompted students with a series of questions based on their personalities. "How would you describe your personality at home, at school, and with friends?" I had students come up with two contrasting or opposite ideas based on their personalities; loud vs. quiet, hard vs. soft, organized vs. messy, complicated vs. simple, etc. Based on these ideas, we visualized how we might be able to show these qualities through clay. For example, how might you show the idea of "loud" or "outgoing" through clay? How might you show that you are organized through clay? We also tive criticism. A question I usually find helpful during critiques is "If you could change one thing about this work, what might that be?" Assessment Students were assessed on communication (did their vessel communicate their two opposite ideas/personalities), artistry, and use of techniques. During the critique, we tried to guess the two opposite ideas for the vessels, discussed interesting uses of techniques, and gave each other construc- Safia Fatimi is an art teacher at Millennium High School in New York, New York. Option to Paint The unpainted vessels look amazing on their own. An option is to use a clear acrylic glaze on the unpainted vessels to make the works look more "finished." If time allows, students can paint their vessels. I only allow students to use three mixed colors. I found that if I do not set restrictions on the amount of color used, the color overpowers the actual vessel and takes away from the work. NatioNal StaNdard Students learn that clay can be transformed in a variety of ways to communicate something about themselves. 27

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