Thursday, July 18, 2019

7th Grade Art

I'll admit it. Middle school is the grade level I struggle with the most when trying to figure out how to run my choice-based classroom. It is likely because the makeup of my classes vary wildly from year to year. Some years I have all the students who aren't enrolled in music, and other years it is opposite band. Some students actively choose are over a music class but most are in there by default. The size of the classes in the last four years have ranged from 6-19 students. Each semester I end up waiting to see the makeup of the class and then responding to it, offering the level of choice that I feel the students are ready for and typically giving less direction as the semester progresses.
This year I had a fantastic 7th grade class. There were only 9 students in the class and they were pretty artistically motivated. I was able to give more freedom earlier on than usual. We had a loose pattern of an assignment that started with an open-ended prompt followed by time to work on independent projects. Some students kept coming back to their independent projects throughout the semester and others would complete multiple projects while their classmates finished up their assignments. I saw a lot of collaboration from working together on constructing sculptures to sharing ideas and inspiring each other.

I am looking forward to seeing what these students create as 8th graders!

We went through a lot of cardboard!
This flower was gifted to the kitchen workers and brightened up the lunchroom for the rest of the school year.
A couple of students even explored digital paintings using photoshop and a graphics tablet on the left and procreate on the right.

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