NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1062082
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 4
ISSN: ISSN-1541-1796
Working Like Artists: A Practice in Theory
Leysath, MaggieAnn
Teaching Artist Journal, v13 n3 p139-150 2015
An artist-educator examines her experience through the lens of constructivism. The author realized she needed to develop a plan for the art program at her school that would permeate the community, school culture, and the lives of students. Students needed skills, instruction, and a reason to make and appreciate art. The author developed a plan that involved the continuation of the study of art education and learning theories, providing students time in which to explore their own lived experiences, and the building of trust with students and the community. The junior high classes focused on formalized instruction for skill building. The Art I classes in high school focused on art history and appreciation. During the students' last three years of art--in the advanced classes--students attempted to create a constructivist classroom environment in which they used the skills and knowledge they had constructed throughout the three years to develop their own visual language. Advanced students learned to think and work like artists, and the classroom was their studio. The author states the importance of artists having the ability to see, experience, think, and act independently and interdependently. Having accurate information provided by an expert offers a place to begin. An understanding can be built upon that foundation as the context of the work is explored, formal aspects are discussed, and connections made between the learner and the artwork. These connections are the seeds of inspiration that lead to the building of a voice, a way of expressing that allows the artist to explore images and formal qualities that express experiences with art, artists, history, and the immediate world. Deciding how these seeds of inspiration can be expressed visually takes large spaces of time and the freedom to explore and try out possibilities. A personal exploration and questioning of the "taken-for-granted" takes time. Creativity takes time. Students need large spaces of time, "time-space," in which to process commonly held beliefs and assumptions. They need time-space in order to construct within themselves knowledge and the processes by which they can express that knowledge. The experience of working like an artist involves student-directed projects that are facilitated by the freedom students have to explore their environment.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Junior High Schools; Secondary Education; Middle Schools; High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A