SchoolArts Magazine

Summer 2017

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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Editor's Letter I n preparing for this issue on Humor, I have given a lot of thought to how humor worked for me in my artroom, both as a classroom management technique and as a theme or approach for engaging lessons. Having just returned from interacting with thousands of art teachers at the NAEA conference in New York City, I was inspired to ask for anecdotes about humor from my Facebook art teacher friends. Here are some of their responses: The biggest and most consistent humor is my hall pass, Gnorbert Alexander Gnome (@gnomegnorbert on Twit - ter). I actually have several [gnomes] painted differently with plaster add-ons, but students believe there is only one and he changes his clothing. He is a lesson in creativ - ity and with that comes a lot of humor. Gnorbs goes on adventures (some of you saw me with him in NYC) and often he gets himself in funny situations. I share his pho - tos with students as well as his tweets. —Katherine Miller I studied improv and have done stand-up comedy, so I have my students try basic improv exercises to loosen up and understand the premise (it's also great for social emotional learning), then draw out an illustration of an absurd premise from a joke visually. —Tim Needles I dress students up like famous artists with each unit and incorporate silly art history stories into my lessons that several of my students go home and retell to their parents. I also use and create memes in my PowerPoints and in signage all over my artroom. I was a child actor, and I use my standup/improv skills more than I ever thought I would as a teacher. I teach 800 + kids on a $100 a year budget, so I have to find humor somewhere. —Kathryn Vaughn I have several: breaking water balloons (sometimes on each other) while learning about fast shutter speed, learning about layer masks in Photoshop by Photoshop - ping students' faces onto celebrities' bodies, and dress- ing up in costume for group photos. In general we laugh a lot and enjoy collaborating! —Kelly Clark Moncure Somehow, we are always laughing. The other day I had some Art 2 students doing a Bob Ross demo and we learned that literally any song somehow goes with a Bob Ross video. They were rolling and so was I! —Leah Smith-Reitzell I didn't expect the prevalence of acting and improvisation in these comments, yet I survived my early years of teaching by "acting" like a teacher. I do believe a humorous viewpoint leads to engaging teaching. What do you think? Visit SchoolArtsRoom.com Follow me on Nancy stumbled across this mural in Tucumcari, New Mexico, and had to take a closer look. There was a reverse mural of the same subject on the other side of the building. SCHOOLARTSMAGAZINE.COM 3

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