SchoolArts Magazine

September 2016

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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Page 7 of 58

O ne of the best things about the start of a new school year is the chance for fresh beginnings and the opportunity to build a strong foundation for your students and art program. With this in mind, I decided to draw on the col - lective wisdom of SchoolArts' c ontributing editors and ask them to share their perspectives. See if any of the following fit with your own approach: The foundation of art education in my school is to cultivate an envi- ronment in which students find joy in learning, discovering, and c reating. My school year is started with an emphasis on the unique qualities of each child and how those attributes make for outstanding artists. —Cassie Stephens I begin every year with a fun but technically challenging project that refreshes the basic skills students learned the previous year. I think of this as artistic calisthenics. For the rest of the year, I offer skill-based lessons to build students' technical abilities and cre - ativity challenges to stretch their imaginations and promote their c reative confidence. —Rama Hughes The foundation of my program is focusing on the end at the begin- ning. What processes will be used, what do I want my students to a ttain, and how will I help them achieve that end result? Art is about process, but eventually, as artists, we all hope to find a successful result in the end. —Nicole Brisco At Sheboygan North High School the foundations courses are designed to expose, educate, and engage beginning art students to varied media, processes, and techniques in 2D and 3D works. It is through these courses that art students learn how to hone their art production, communication, and problem-solving skills. —Frank Juarez The Shanghai American School's art department has developed three goals for itself: to scaffold creativity as a skill across a K–12 curriculum; to empower students to seek out ways to change the world through their creative abilities; and to engage students with local artists to create strong connections with their community. This year, we aim to push these goals further in the high school with the creation of our Maker Space and the further development of our inte- grated interdisciplinary classes. —David Gran After reflecting on these statements, consider using them as a guide to write your own about the foundations of your art program. Such a statement would be beneficial to share with your adminis- trators, fellow teachers, parents, and students. Visit Follow me on Editor's Letter SCHOOLARTSMAGAZINE.COM 3 From top: Cassie Stephens, Rama Hughes, Nicole Brisco, Frank Juarez, David Gran

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