Managing the Artroom
Strategies for Organization in Art
In recent years, art education has been transformed in many posi- tive ways. We have an increased ability to access information
through the Internet or by attending
professional development workshops.
We encourage personal expression
through the language of art and
develop challenging visual problems
for our students. We identify and evaluate the content and context of all the
various activities we do in our art programs. We should also aim to create a
workable and quality environment for
teachers and students.
One of the most important ways to
increase the quality of classroom
management is to look objectively and
carefully at your organizational skills.
By streamlining your ability to orga-
Create special workstations or centers ahead of time.
nize, you can work smarter and not
just harder, thus saving time for more
Create a specific place or worksta-
student is in harm’s way. Don’t
tion for materials ahead of time.
hesitate to refer the student to the
This will demonstrate respect for
nurse, guidance counselor, school
• Welcome students as they come
the materials and encourage their
psychologist, or parent. Know your
into the room.
return at the end of class.
legal responsibility to report abuse.
• Start class as soon possible after the • Demonstrate how to safely carry
• Create mutual respect by stressing
and use materials and tools.
the use of appropriate art vocabu-
• Establish a few significant class-
• Create labeled class folders for
lary during class critique. This will
room rules. It is important to have
student work. These are especially
objectify the language and discour-
a follow-up discipline plan in place
helpful when work is to be handed
age students from making overly
that the students are informed of
in for grading.
personal comments. Have an expec-
ahead of time.
• Avoid random piles that accumu-
tation that only one person speaks
• Treat time as a critical factor so stu-
late on your desk or potential work-
at a time. Set the tone for the dis-
dents get the most out of each class.
cussion and model this behavior.
• Choose words that create the most • Celebrate and show respect for
Paying attention to classroom
impact when introducing a new
student work by exhibiting it both management is key to our success
within and beyond the school envi- and of the quality of the programs we
• Offer clear and concise instructions
develop. The benefit of being a well-
focusing on the depth and breadth
• Create an emotionally safe work
organized, proactive, thoughtful, and
of the concept students will be
environment. A level of trust needs reflective teacher is the best possible
to be established from day one.
work environment for all involved.
•;Be aware of eye contact, voice tone, • Pay attention to the climate of your
and generating a positive attitude
when discussing the exciting pos-
sibilities of each project.
• Be well-organized with materials.
classroom and listen to your stu-
dents on an intuitive level. What
are they really saying?
• Respect confidentiality unless the
Ken Vieth is an art teacher and artist, the
author of From Ordinary to Extraordinary
and Engaging the Adolescent Mind, and
co-author of The Visual Experience (all