Four Essential Questions
1. What is it we want our
students to learn?
2. How will we know if each
student has learned it?
3. How will we respond when
some students do not learn it?
4. How can we extend and enrich
the learning for students who
have demonstrated proficiency?
Ben Graham, grade eight.
If building came to a halt
How Do I Extend and Enrich
due to lack of vision, students were Learning for Students Who
asked to look for more visuals of
balize or demonstrate the proper
their animals. Nature magazines and As students gained proficiency, I
way to attach details or glaze their books including a visual dictionary
encouraged them to develop larger,
of animals were available for perusal. more complex ideas and to focus on
Asking students to identify unique
bringing more detail into their work.
How Will I Respond When
characteristics about their animals
Compliments go a long way. By letting
Students Don’t Learn?
helped some focus on what to build
students know how pleased I was with
When I noticed students struggling,
their work, their confidence grew and
I asked them to repeat back to me
Students with special needs ben-
so did the risk-taking, resulting in a
what they thought the expectations
efitted from frequent repetition. When more sophisticated and mature prod-
were and to demonstrate the skills
reviewing directions, I often wrote
them on the
board in the In letting students know how
Mary Coy teaches art at Spry Middle
form of a fill-in- School in Webster, New York, and is a pleased I was with their work,
contributing editor for SchoolArts. mary_
the-blank quiz their confidence grew and so
and had the class did the risk-taking, resulting
asked them to
the answers. in a more sophisticated and
Students use subjects, themes, and
tell me three
symbols that demonstrate knowledge
tips for mak-
of contexts, values, and aesthetics
ing coils and to demonstrate how to
extremely poor artistry indicated to
that communicate intended meaning
make one. Tips included: standing up; me a lack of understanding on the part in artworks.
using enough clay equal to the size of of students as to how to refine their
a hotdog; and rolling hands back and
work as taught. Short one-on-one dem-
forth with fingers open while gently
onstrations reviewing how to blend
stretching the coil outward in length; coils neatly, or how to firmly rub the
making the coil as thick as the handle form with a damp sponge reminded
of the needle tool they were using.
students of proper construction and