Before the polar vortex created icy roads and closed schools across Kentucky I worked with students and teachers in Jackson County, Kentucky to provide job-embedded PD as part of the CTL Artful Reading project. As part of this work students and teachers are learning about creating, responding and producing works of art. Here’s what happened in one classroom focused on the visual arts.
A work of art to look at, wonder about and discuss. A landscape of town and country, icy mountain cliffs. Familiar and unfamiliar. The title of the painting is not shared with students initially, this is a process of discovery.
Key vocabulary and content to provide background and support for the discussion.
The questions, facilitated by the teacher to encourage wondering, discussion and close looking. These are based on the work of Philip Yenawine and Abigail Housen. (Visual Thinking Strategies)
The setting. A second grade classroom with access to the internet allows us to use Google Art Project to locate and project the painting for all to see. Google Art Project also allows us to zoom in and look closely at details and sections of the painting.
A snippet of the class discussion. Students are discovering and thinking about the painting, talking and listening to one another other and asking questions.
After a lively discussion the introduction of oil pastels and an art making lesson. Students are invited to create landscapes real or imagined. Since it was close to the holidays, seasonal landscapes emerged.
A work in progress.
After looking at art and making art, students reflect in their journals about the experience.
“Hunters in the Snow” by Pieter Bruegel the Elder