The Visual Arts program is balanced between two-dimensional and three-dimensional studies. Some examples of processes and techniques covered:
· Drawing (pencil, charcoal, ink, pastels, computer)
· Clay/various 3d modeling media
· Painting (watercolor, acrylic, oil, airbrush)
· Printing/3d Printing/Etching/Engraving
The most important functions that an art teacher has in the development of their students is to build confidence and resilience, increase exposure, and encourage experimentation. The worst thing an art teacher can do is to provide critique, even if it’s constructive, before middle school years or later – when the student is resilient enough to grow from it. A child needs freedom from judgment in order to develop artistic spontaneity. In order to allow each child to develop their natural talent, the big focus for the majority of art projects will be on process and experimentation, not on the finished product. The goal of the studies is for every student to think of themselves as capable artists. The art program culminates in a juried art show.
The studies are usually tied to one of the other units, such as history. If students are studying a particular period in history, there will be some coverage of the key art developments during that time. In the art history component of the program, the goal is to have surveyed each major art movement by the end of elementary years through projects of increasing demand and complexity.
In addition to the overlap with history, the art program will overlap with science topics, field studies, and writing. No discipline is safe from its connection to the arts. A student may find themselves in the classroom room illustrating a story as part of their writing class, or making a scale model as part of their science class. They may be learning an application to make 3-d print designs in their programming class or looking at paintings with the golden ratio during mathematics. The goal of our program is to provide opportunities to draw as many interdisciplinary connections as possible to achieve the greatest generalization of knowledge.
Another key component of our program is rooted in contemporary art. As part of this program, we will be working with area artists to develop our artist-in-residence program. Watch our news page for announcements about the artists that will be selected for our artists in residence for this academic school year. The artists will be able to take the students through their own creative process from start to finish. The other part of the program will be in visiting contemporary art installations and learning about the art that is being developed in them. We will build a relationship with a major art university to help differentiate our art curriculum further.
The design of the art program is to meet each student where they are and take them to the next level. Not everyone will be a Michelangelo, but we will work toward the goal that each student feels competent to have the tools to get tasks that require artistic skills done, for those where art is just not a strong suit or interesting, and to allow them to appreciate art. For those gifted in the arts, we will help them soar. We will in particular focus on building mentorships in the areas where there is interest with contemporary local artists.