Thursday, April 25, 2013

That's a Wrap!!!

Before this class i had little to no understanding of what technology could be used for within the classroom setting. I knew of the basic ways to use technology within the classroom but was unaware of how I could use a course website, a classroom blog, the interactive white board, a digital story, digital diagrams, or inquiry based activities to help my students learn about art in a more proactive and interactive way.  Before this class I was actually somewhat afraid of technology, not because I did not want to learn it, but because I was unsure how it would be beneficial for my students in an art related setting. I have seen how some of these tools can be used in an art classroom but have really only been used as a start up mechanism or a hook to get students interested. I wanted to learn how to do that in my own way but I also wanted to learn how to use these tools during my lessons/projects too. I wanted to learn how these technology could be used in a way for students to think about their work and progress in their knowledge of materials and processes.

As the class began with creating a classroom website, I could already see how I was going to use my prior knowledge of technology and education to incorporate the new use of it within an art classroom. The website gave me a way to build my foundation. Everything we have done has been uploaded or embedded into the website. Having a place that could be built upon with all of the information was very helpful. I cannot wait to use my website with students using it to guide them through the class.

From there we began the inquiry based activity, which I was not too fond of in the beginning. While I understand the usefulness of the Wiki and the interaction and collaboration students can have, I am not sure how it will be very useful in the art classroom on a middle school level. If I were teaching high school then I could expect from my students to maybe use the Wiki as a discussion board for continuing our art critiquing process or to discuss an art movement or even an artist that goes along with a particular lesson. For middle school I could see using the inquiry based activity with an art history lesson or with the discovery of a new medium or process. I am sure there are many uses to think of, however, when you are in a middle school art class the last thing you want to do or will probably have time to do is an inquiry based activity. I may only see my students three or two times a week if that. I need to use other means of teaching them art if we are going to get through completing multiple projects a semester.

The interactive white board on the other hand was fabulous. I have been waiting all semester to get my hands on creating one and interacting with one myself. After seeing them used in my observation classes, I was able to see how useful they can be in any classroom but with the art class, students really paid attention to the instruction going on. This is a tool I can see many uses for in my own classroom because I can see my students all being able to participate and learn what I am trying to teach them. The flipchart I made will be useful in my classroom. I already have more idea for other lesson and projects with the use of the interactive white board. What I like the most is that a blank slide can be placed within any flipchart and used for students to practice drawing, mixing colors, creating shapes, etc. I like having an actual white board so to speak within a lesson plan introduction.

The digital diagram and digital storytelling video projects were also very beneficial to learn and tools that I will have under my belt for differentiated instruction in the future. With art, these tools may actually become projects in themselves for students to learn how to create and pay attention to various ways of creating works of art by technology means. However, learning to create them myself will help me to assist students in creating theirs. I could also see the usefulness of these tools to present an artist, art movement, medium, or process to students.

Throughout the semester we have been blogging about all of these projects. Blogging is something I was never into nor did I really understand how it worked. Now I realize it is not very complex but their is a method to it. I see this tool as a means of communication with students and their families to inform them all of what we are doing in the classroom, as well as a means of communication for other teachers to see what is going on within a classroom of the same content area. 

I now feel ready and equipped to step into my internship classroom. While there is till much to learn, I feel more knowledgeable to better teacher my students about art in an interactive and collaborative way with differentiated instruction for all learner types. The most important thing about these tools it that they provide different forms for learning the same content. I do not feel that I have a particular disappointment, but that I feel as though their is still so much to learn. However, I now have a start and can proceed on my own, or with other art teachers around me, to build upon this knowledge. Teaching art has always been what I wanted to do. The more I learn in my education classes the more I feel prepared and excited to finally begin.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Website: My Art Experience

Technology was always a big part of my life growing up. My dad was very techno-savvy and knew how to work with computers, cameras, or any kind of technological equipment that was being promoted at the time. I also have a very close family friend who is techno-savvy and would always keep me up to date with the latest iPod, app, Wii, etc. applications. To be an aspiring teacher in the midst of a rapidly growing world that is always demanding new experiences with new things, can be a challenge in itself. I have felt this never-ending pressure to become aware of the world in which I live in. It is a world where technology is highly used and relied upon, and where having technology knowledge is highly valued. This class has aided me in becoming that techno-savvy teacher I need to be to be successful and marketable in the world of today. The entire foundation of this class revolves around our websites, and thus I am very much satisfied and appreciative of being taught how to create a classroom website, as well as all of the other projects now embedded onto my website for students and their parents viewing.

I appreciate any head start I can get, so being able to learn how to create this basis of communication outside the classroom setting with my students and their families is very important. My classroom website is meant to be an experience in itself. I want my students to be able to easily go through the site when they need to and find inspirations that may aid them in their discovery of creation. With a little bit about myself and my art experience, students can get to know me as their teacher and as a fellow artist. I want to be a teacher who is open for communication at all times. Art can be a scary place and students who are unsure about their abilities are going to be unsure about the work they can create. Part of my plan for this website is to use it for guiding students in their exploration, as well as allowing them to see what has been created, what can be created, and how they can go about creating it. 

Students will find the support they need outside the classroom on this site, as well as the inspiration they may not have gotten during class time. It is important that this website be the place students go for looking up artists, researching project subject matter, and have fun learning about art. While students can get on the Internet and search whatever they want, I want them to begin at the class website. I plan to provide students will new material related to each project as we go. There are pages on the website specifically for this, as well I want to post documents for students to access that relate to the projects we are creating. Documents could include: vocabulary lists, rubrics, discussion questions, pre- or post- assessments, etc. Overall, I want my experience with this course to continue and I want to continue to grow in my knowledge of technology so that I can keep my students informed and up to date as well.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Blogging In the Classroom: A Beneficial View

Before this class I was never a blog reader or a blog follower. I did not pay much attention to the use of blogs and how bloggers chose a topic of interest to them to keep up with in a journal web-based public diary. I have also never been someone to keep an ongoing journal or diary that is consistent enough to keep up with current events, emotions, or changes in my life. After creating my own blog and getting a feel for what it is like to make posts weekly that relate to an aspect of my life, I am starting to see what these bloggers are raving about and how they have become so easily addicted. In my attempts to express myself, I cannot keep a consistent physical written journal, I do not like simply posting on the website, but I feel best when typing thoughts out on a keyboard. Blogging has allowed me to be expressive in my thoughts, while typing my feelings out, without having to keep a physical journal that I have to remember to keep up with and write in. I really like using the tools Google has to offer. With my account I can access this blog anywhere, from any computer as long as I have Internet.

Furthermore, beginning the process of blogging now has been beneficial for embedding it to my website for my future art classroom. Using blogging in this form, with my students and their family, will be a successful way to keep everyone updated on what is going on. It can be accessible to all with Internet and will give updates as to art events, artists, what the class is studying/creating, and how we are thinking about art and growing in our explorations/experiences as a class. This can also be a great way to share ideas, unit/lesson plans, and thoughts on the art classroom from teacher to teacher. Not only is blogging beneficial for students and their family, it is also beneficial for the teacher to have a place to share what students are up to and how things are going within different classroom. Overall, this experience has been more than beneficial and conducive to my experience and growth as an aspiring teacher. I will use this blog to share what is going on in my classroom and to stay connected to my students and their family. Hopefully continuing this blog will be representative of the steps I have taken toward becoming a teacher, as well as the steps my class has taken to becoming artists.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Beauty of Detail: Digital Storytelling

While I am not an iMovie exert by any means, this was not my first encounter with the software. I took a video class about two years ago that opened my eyes and thoughts to a new world of creating works of art. Whether it be using photos (as I have done here) or actually using footage that was recorded, making a movie is not an easy task to complete. While working on this project, it quit on me several time, which I expected from my previous experiences. The good thing about the software is that it automatically saves the work you have done. With trying to figure everything else out, it is nice to not have to worry about saving every step of the way.

I had in mind creating a movie that could then be a lead in t another art project or new lesson. Juxtaposition is the act of positioning close together or side-by-side of two things that are either related or have absolutely nothing to do with each other. I decided to take the route of relating with this video and juxtaposition my photos of flowers with that of a poem about flowers written by Emily Dickinson. Her poem Transplanted allowed me to visually express the words of the poem through the use of images I have taken of flowers. While the pictures do not relate word for word, the poem speaks about love, and in this case I absolutely love flowers. There is something so wonderful about walking into a room with real flowers sitting on the table. My mom says that flowers are a waste of money, but I think that they are a brief time for us to reflect on the small details of beauty that we too often miss in our hectic lives.

This digital storytelling video was made to allow students that practice of juxtaposition in a media and technology filled way. This idea can then be transitioned to students learning to apply it in their works of two-dimensional and three-dimensional works of art. I also have intent to move on with this video in mind and have students create a piece based on the artist Georgia O'Keeffe, as well as get students thinking about poetry, language, and the use of words when describing their works of art to viewers.

Overall, this was a new experience for me as I had never really used iMovie in this way to create a video. It was fun collecting my photos and playing around with ideas. I believe that the music I chose to use enhanced the mood and tone I wished to set by juxtaposing the photos and poem together, as well as the use of effective transitions that aided nicely in the flow of the video as a whole. It is an odd way of deciding to create this project, but then again I am aspiring art teacher, and I do have an art background when it comes to interpretation and execution of assignments, no matter the class.

 The Beauty of Detail

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Digital Diagram: Pop Art

The world of Pop Art is explored with students through this digital diagram. Through visual introduced, students learn about three influential artists of the Pop Art Movement. The link attached to the "Pop Art" heading will take students to a site that provides various examples of Pop Art works, as well as various quizzes and project ideas for learning how to create Pop Art in the classroom. This digital diagram will begin students' steps to creating their own work of Pop Art

Creating this diagram was educational and gave me a different perspective on the ways in which I can even take the time to begin a project. Inspiring students to get involved and be interested in the lesson you are trying to teach can be hard. With the use of this digital diagram, I think students will find it beneficial to access their prior knowledge, or create new knowledge about the world of Pop Art. Learning to use this program is something that will only enhance my tool belt. However, it was hard to figure out what would work best in this format to help students learn and become involved. While it will be good for some topics, this program is definitely not for everything. Then again, that is why we learn differentiated learning. Students need a variety when they come to class and this is just another way to teach them.

Pop Art 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Color Wheel, Color Theory Interactive White Board

First impressions of the interactive white board included: there is no way I am going to be able to work this thing and how the heck can I get my lessons to connect to the uses of this technology tool. However, I spent about four hours one Sunday afternoon just messing around with the program and trying different things out. Come to find that I really enjoyed creating the flipchart. My mom has always said, "Never judge a book by its cover." I know this is the oldest saying, but it is very true. Especially in today's world, we are surrounded by new technologies and ways of doing things that we have been doing for decades. The challenge comes when we are not open to the new way of doing things that will further inspire and expand the knowledge and understanding of our young people. This flipchart really gave me a new set of skills that I will be building upon in my own future classroom some day.

Creating my own flipchart for the first time meant trying new things and being open for just as many failures as successes. I am a very hands on person so doing everything once for myself was a must. Once, I got past being able to use the program, rememer when to save, and become comfortable with the property objects I really began to have fun with it. I chose the color wheel and color theory because I thought it would be more beneficial for my students to learn about color and color relationships without actually using any color mediums yet. The final project of the whole lesson has students eventually creating their own abstract color wheel. Before they did that I wanted them to learn about mixing colors, what colors can be mixed, what colors are not relatable, and how colors that are side-by-side can either enhance or detract from each other.

I believe that my art background really lent itself to the neatness and creative aspects of this flipchart lesson. I wanted to create a cohesive look and keep the flow of the flipchart engaging for students. For the subject area of art, I believe that the tools I used really complimented what I wanted students to learn and get out of this interactive way of teaching and learning. On the other hand, creating this flipchart lesson around an art project made it a little more challenging to get my students involved and having fun. I did not want to just have them learn vocabulary or use the tools to see what was missing and filling in blanks. While art vocabulary is essential to creating art, I wanted them to actually engage and participate in discussion about color with real life, and to learn how to think about the use of colors without actually touching the paint medium yet. In all, I believe that I did a good job considering that this was the first time I have worked with this program. We are all in this together as aspiring teachers. We will all learn and grow together, expand from one another, and proceed with our future abilities related to the growing technology as one working teacher preparing for a variety of ways to teach and help our students grow.

Interactive Color Wheel
This website is used as a way for students to learn color relationships and mixing colors prior to actually getting their hands on the paint medium. It is a good chance to allow students the experimentation before allowing them to use real paint. We want to be conservative in our paint usage so we do not waste any. This helps students learn to be sparing and that they can always go back fro more.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Colorful Color Wheels

A color wheel is an abstract illustrative organization of color hues around a circle that shows relationships between primary colors, secondary colors tertiary colors, complementary colors, etc.

Primary colors are red, yellow, and blue arranged at three equally spaced points on the colors wheel. These colors are not able to be created. All other colors come from the primary colors except black and white. When an artists goes to buy tubes of paint they can only worry about buying red, yellow, blue, black, and white if they want to because everything else can be mixed or created from these colors. An artist has a lot of flexibility with the primary colors.
Primary Colors
Secondary colors are purple, organce, and greem and are also arranged at three equally spaced points on the colors wheel placed between the two prinmary colors that make them. They are made by mixing the 2 adjacent colors together on the color wheel.
Secondary Colors
Tertiary colors are red/orange, yellow/orange, yellow/green, blue/green, blue/purple, and red/purple placed between the primary and secondary colors that make them on the color wheel. Their are two tertiary colors on a color wheel per every primary color. When listing them it is important to note that the primary color always comes first then the secondary color second.
Tertiary Colors
Values of the colors are created by adding black or white to any color. You can create shades by adding black to any color and tints by adding white to any color.

Complementary colors are red/green, blue/orange, and yellow/purple. When mixed together they make brown. If used together side by side they create a brighter appearance of each other. You can locate complementary colors on the opposite side of the color wheel.

Warm and Cool colors:

Color wheels have been, and continue today to be an artists tool to understanding color and values. Color wheels help artists to create an understanding of mixing and creating values of colors to use in different mediums of art. Artists need to be able to use the color relationships to their advantage. The color wheel has been used to focus on many aspects of life outside of the art room. People use color wheels and the relationships of colors in decorating their homes, school or work presentation, dressing for the day, etc. People use color wheels in their everyday lives and careers as well. Tattoo artists, interior designers, hair colorists, publishing/advertisements, coating cars, fashion designers, etc.

The interactive white board will be a great way for me to explain the color wheel to my students. At the moment the program scares me a little and I am somewhat intimidated by its many features. However, I know that it is a great way to teach students in a fun, engaging, and collaborative way. I plan to create a lesson that allows students to create their own color wheels in their own style. I first want to give them the background information so they understand the relevance and importance of the color wheel and colors in general in the art room and in the real world. I found a few started websites that have interesting ways of getting students to play with the way a color wheel is set up and why/how the colors came to be created. The Interactive Color Wheel: Fun Color Theory is a great website where student can click on the different colors that make up the color wheel and learn more about how the colors are made and their properties. Another great site is the Free Art Game for Kids: Interactive Color Wheel, which is a site where students can learn how to mix the colors without using real paints just yet. It is like a trial and error. The site also provides other activities that will help student further their abilities once they have learned why color is so important.

By the end of the interactive white board presentation I want my students to be ready to create their own abstract color wheels to resemble the below image: