Monday, September 24, 2018

Art 2 Important Reminders

Art 2's
Remember that Oct. 1st (next Monday) is the final date to adjust your still life based off the feedback you have received.
If you are making changes, don't forget to upload a finished/final photo before you submit your assignment to me again. Additionally, leave me a comment in the assignment that tells me what you did/changed.

As for Independent Practice...last week you filled out a self reflection. Not all of them are where they need to be. Once you read the feedback I gave on those and/or in the gradebook, see me if needed. There are several that are marked as "I" and shouldn't be. This may be a very simple fix, but it may need more from you.
You have this week to get this to where it should be.

Whenever you change and/or finish something, always upload a new photo documenting the newest version of the piece.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Thinking About Finishing and Follow Up

Art 1's:
As we near the end of our first "big" project, I wanted to take a moment and encourage you to spend some time in the studio during out of class time this next week.
Some of you already do this regularly, but most of you do not. Please schedule this in.

Not only will some of you need it to finish your still life drawing well, but there is also the matter of your sketchbook. As most of you hopefully noticed, I got feedback into the Canvas gradebook before the weekend. For those that I didn't get to (yet), I should easily get that done at some point tomorrow.
You will have this coming week (the last of September) to use the feedback to make any adjustments and/or fixes to your work.

To remind you, I already have marks recorded separately from the online gradebook, but I know through research and experience that you won't really pay attention to that feedback the way it is intended to if you see a "grade" up front. After this week I will put your assessment in the gradebook, but if you have gone back and made adjustments, so will I.
Some people will see something like "great job", and will need to do nothing; many people need to do even the simplest things such as label everything properly; several of you will need to go back and show that you can shade with smudge shading while having the entire objects shaded (not just the edges) and without lines for definition. If you have questions, see me at tutorial. Please.

I am requesting your sketchbook by the end of this week for final assessment if you are going back to make adjustments. If you do not need to do anything, or just decide not to, you don't need to give it to me again.
If you go back and fix something, I need to see an updated photograph in Canvas that documents the changes made (ask me about this when you turn it in again).

I have put some more sketchbooks up along the window sill in class so all of you can see some of the interesting things your peers have done. If I don't have you in class tomorrow, you can still come and pick up your sketchbook at tutorial or after school if you know you want to have time to use the feedback I have provided - otherwise you will get it in class when I see you.

I hope you had a great weekend!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Thinking About Assessment

As we are nearing the third week of the first grading period, a lot of grades will begin to turn up in both the Canvas and Aeries gradebooks.
I believe in a different form of assessment than many teachers, and it is certainly different than how I was assessed as a student.
I do not think you can do things the way they have always been done and find success in the same way.
I also do not believe that grades indicate learning. As a measurement tool they have plenty of things wrong with them.
Unfortunately for me they are a way of life for our students and our larger school community.

What I know is that if a student is present, working, and thoughtfully putting marks on a page/canvas that they will improve and show growth. They will also find out more about themselves and learn processes that are important to their development as individual humans - and individual humans that exist in a community.

While this is very lofty sounding indeed, there is truth in it.
It is about the learning, not about the grade. We all know that students have ways of achieving an "A" but not really and truly mastering the content. Unfortunately there is a lot of grade inflation and students (and families) too often expect a superior mark for less than superior performance.

With that said, I do have a process that I have been developing, and since we are getting to the point of having larger and finished projects coming up - and since the school requires marks in a gradebook - I wanted to share my general process with you.
This general process also links to a grading policies document - that includes a percentage scale - if you are interested.

Have a great day!

Friday, September 7, 2018

A Good Morning Follow Up

While I begin my second cup of coffee this morning, I'd like to say a big thank you to everyone that was able to make it to BTSN last night. It's a long day for everyone, but I do get jazzed with all of the parental units coming into the spaces that I get to call a home-away-from-home.
Even after all these years the rooms are still a work in progress, but I kind of like it that way. You know, my penchant for process and all that.

Over my FIRST cup of coffee there was a great article I read about how beneficial mistakes can be to the process of learning, so you might be interested in it as well.

I mostly say the same things in each class at BTSN, but since I have five times I have to repeat myself in a short period of time I know each class got slightly different information as well. I'll try to keep it brief.

It is important to me that my students are willing and thoughtful. There is no substitute for putting "marks in a page". I need something to go off of to help them.

The students need to own their own learning. I will give vast feedback and help, but I can't read minds, and if they are struggling or frustrated it is best if they find a kind and appropriate way to communicate that with me.

Feedback is important and I expect them to read all of the feedback given and use it/respond to it via making their work stronger. I put a lot of comments into the different items listed in the grade book, so that is a great way to stay current and up to date - if you have that sort of interest even as a parent.

I believe in adjustments and do-overs whenever possible. Which goes along with the above statements.

Growth is what I want to see. After doing this for so many years it is very easy to tell if true and conscientious effort was put forth. It is painfully obvious to me if something was rushed at the last minute, and rushing physical products at the last minute is the best way to ensure less than desirable results.

I expect the students to engage in the curriculum. Sitting idly by - which some are wont to do - is a bad idea and will not only not help them, but it will not get them where they likely want to be. Just being in the room and not disrupting the process isn't enough. Engagement means a lot more to me that just being present. I do not need perfection. I do need thoughtful engagement. I know from experience that if the student is truly trying then decent (if not good - or great) product will result.

The use of tutorial time on a consistent basis will make this class better for everyone involved.

I am also here before and after school and I strongly encourage the students to use the studio during those times as well. Even if they aren't working on Art, but they need a good place to be, I hope they make the studio a home.

Did I mention that tutorial is super important to use yet?

We have been off to a good start, and, as I do each year, I am so excited that I have to reign myself in from trying to do too much too soon. I just love what I teach, so what can I say?!

If you've made it this far, yeah for you. The last thing I would ask (and this is totally optional) is if you have another moment to share a short anecdote about your child, that would be rad.
You can use THIS LINK if you are so inclined.

Thank you again!