Reading Response Blog #1
“Story and the Picture” Chapter 1:
This chapter focuses on why teaching through art is so important, especially for younger students. The reason there is emphasis on the word through is because while actual art instruction and creating aesthetically pleasing projects is important, it is not the only way to actually teach art. Teaching through art can provide so much more for children. For example, when a classroom of students look at artworks, they naturally want to discuss them. This promotion of discussion helps the children construct their own knowledge by telling stories of what may be occurring in the piece. Imaginative skills are also improved here, especially because there is no real wrong answer regarding each child’s interpretation of the artwork.
The introduction of works of art to young children is also extremely helpful in building necessary classroom skills. Showing artworks to children allows them to construct their own knowledge, appreciate diversity, imaginatively think in critical ways, and tell stories. This brings in the idea of constructivism, which can be referred to as a theory involving how people learn. “When children construct their own knowledge they become active participants in the learning process, rather than passive ones” (Mulcahey 4). Being active in the learning process allows students to reconcile new knowledge with previous ideas and experiences, thus becoming an active learning in their own learning process.
In conclusion, many teachers have found that teaching through art by showing examples of adult artwork and having the children discuss it, both students and educators can benefit while learning is being enriched. This chapter was one that has encouraged me to teach throughart when I am an educator. Rather than just integrating art-making activities into my early childhood programs, I will also encourage talking about artwork and how it makes my students feel.
“Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” Chapter 1:
Chapter 1 of “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” delves into the idea that accessing the part of one’s brain that promotes creative, initiative and thought provoking learning can allow one to learn the fundamental skills of visual art. However, the fundamental skills of visual art is not all one would learn when they access the “right” side of the brain.
This reading has a lot more to do with the actual process of drawing and art-making than “Story and the Picture” does. But both readings state that art can only help a child’s developments in learning. This reading was interesting and discussed many aspects of art that I agree with. For example, I strongly agree with this quote, “In drawing you will delve deeply into a part of your mind too often obscured by endless details of daily life. From this experience you will develop your ability to perceive things freshly in their totality, to see underlying patterns and possibilities for new combinations” (Drawing and the Art of Riding a Bicycle).
- How does one effectively introduce works of art to children while still keeping their interest or making the lesson age appropriate?
- What are some ways to promote discussion about art?
- How does the process of drawing compare to looking at art works?
- How young is too young to promote the discussion about art?
- How do you incorporate discussion to include those that do not like talking about the works they have created?