Inherent in the teaching of art are primal instincts to have fun and to create. However, art is as necessary to human development as any high school course that is offered. The student quickly learns that the art room is a laboratory and invitation to explore and create. It is a safe place where pushing the envelope in creativity is the testing ground for taking art to others and seeking skills needed in life: self-discipline, dignity in work and doing something well, sharing, building trust and ‘self’, promoting curiosity, respect, and ways to make a difference, no matter how small. The student learns that historical and cultural origins of art connect all of humanity.
Critical thinking, performance and assessment techniques meet state and national standards. The Art 2 course includes four sections: Pottery. Sculpture, 3 Dimensional Design and Batik. Each section is a 9 week unit and addresses the creative points of view of 10th and 11th grade students and the state and national Humanities standards, patterned after the work of the Idaho Department of Education and the talented group of art educators who authored the Humanities Courses of Study. While this course addresses national standards, it is not intended for that purpose only.
For years art programs, nationwide, have incorporated much of which we call national standards. They were just called something else. Using the structure of the national standards in no way limit’s the creativity or potential to go ‘beyond’. As a matter of fact, this course is meant to promote free thinking, individuality, and creativity, while addressing national guidelines. This text can be adapted to classes that meet daily or are set to block scheduling. Included are daily and weekly lesson plans that offer classroom-tested teaching strategies, most of which contain a hands-on approach to the teaching of art. There are a variety of teaching approaches using strategies like cooperative learning groups, subject-area worksheets, and individual student projects that include friends and families as well.
The course involves active learning through demonstrations and exercises, writing, reading, numeracy, group activities, research and computer usage, community and volunteer work. Teachers receive a guide, daily/weekly lesson plans, and class notes as both overhead masters and in PowerPoint formats. The creative course materials are intended to help any teacher or teacher preparation student, whether in college or experienced as a seasoned teacher, the university supervisor who is teaching and supervising student teachers, district Humanities coordinators, and building administration.