¶ … Teaching Video This taught them to see why they valued what they did. In a cultural way, this link was made by showing how though cultures and times change, some things stay the same and their knowledge of European history was connected to new knowledge of modern times when I showed them each how the subject they chose could be traced back to the Baroque era through historical channels. Their knowledge of community was also linked because they already had a sense of how they all belonged to a society and now they could see how groups interlinked through things like school and common interests like sports or movies or religion. We did this at the end of class after the students had taken some time to begin with their painting exercises and this allowed us to wrap up our day with a quick examination of ourselves and how we had connected.
In the video I am showing how to paint like a Baroque artist, teaching the students the art of chiaroscuro, dynamism, impasto, and sprezzato. This would be lesson plan no. 5 and incorporates various aspects of the art technique.
Promoting a Positive Learning Environment
Demonstrating Respect, Rapport, and Responsiveness
I demonstrated respect for students with varied needs and backgrounds by taking time to ask them each whether they saw how the four different methods of painting helped to produce the desired effects. This allowed them to show that they could see the effects of light and shadow, movement, thickness, and quickness. We developed rapport by talking about other techniques that could be used and the students each contributed by suggesting a technique, such as blotting, dotting, etc. that could add something to the style. I demonstrated responsiveness by locating those techniques in other art movements, such as pop/modern and abstract, etc., and the students saw how techniques of painting helped to establish new directions in art and new movements that went away from the Baroque/Mannerist style. I encouraged them to examine and compare two styles from two different eras, say Baroque and Modern (Velasquez and Picasso) to see how different they were and I asked them why this might be so -- what had happened in culture and the world to give these artists such different approaches to creating art and reflecting reality in the way that they did. We did this at the beginning of class before starting on practicing their own brush strokes in the style of a Baroque painter.
3. Engaging Students in Learning
a. Creating Meaning through Interpretation
My instruction engaged students to create meaning through interpreting art by showing them why an artist like Honthorst would use light to focus attention on a specific individual, such as the Matchmaker. Then I asked the students why this was done, and they interpreted the meaning of this use of light, suggesting that the Matchmaker is the subject or that the light shifts the narrative from one side of the picture to another. The students each had to say one way of interpreting this image.
When it came time to practice developing Baroque works of art, the students were encouraged to create a concept first. This means they had to think about the subject they wanted to paint. It could come from their personal lives or their life at school. The main thing was to have a subject, a story, and then to tell that story by painting an image. We discussed how stories in paintings do not have to be long like a book. They can simply be an idea -- something like Mr. X is A, B, and C, shown by how he is painted. This got them thinking about who or what they would like to paint. The main focus was to choose an idea that was meaningful for them. So for some, who had religious families, they wanted to do a religious picture. For others, sports and movies were important to them, so they wanted to paint a picture of a sports hero standing with his baseball bat or his football, because this gear identified them, just like a sword and horse would identify a Baroque person. The movie star was given the similar treatment, so in this way, modern examples of important things were used as the subject for Baroque treatment and the students were more engaged in the process of painting as a result.
b. Linking Students' Prior Learning with New Learning
This instruction linked students' prior academic knowledge with new knowledge in that they already had an understanding of the Baroque era and how art represented major ideas from the time, such as nobility, redemption, social interaction, etc., and now they could see how those ideas were generated in painting in a hands-on approach. Their personal knowledge was also linked in that they already understood what was important to them and now they could express that importance in an ...
4. Deepening Student Learning during Instruction
a. Relating Art to Context
We related art to context by showing how a Baroque artist would not paint something for no reason, but how the stories they told and the people they painted were significant to them because they conveyed an idea about history or society or something special with which people could identify.
With that idea, we looked at the subjects the students chose to see how they were important in a contextual way. One student chose James Bond to paint and this was because a new James Bond movie had just been released. We talked about why James Bond was important to people and what made many people want to see the films. The answer was that Bond was "cool" and "tough" and "suave" and "sophisticated" so we wanted to capture this essence in how he was depicted. The student chose to paint Bond in a white tuxedo coat and in the background was a nice car and female companion. On the wall in the background were smaller portraits of previous Bonds, so the picture incorporated social aspects as well as historical aspects of the Bond character. He used chiaroscuro to emphasize the sleekness and mystery inherent in the Bond image, which was a very Baroque custom.
Another student wanted to paint a picture of Pete Rose, because he was a controversial figure in baseball who was very good but was never elected into the Hall of Fame because he gambled on baseball. We talked about how a Baroque artist would depict Pete Rose in a portrait, whether he would be standing or sitting to indicate his uncertain position in baseball's legacy. We talked about what he should wear, his baseball uniform or clothes that he might wear to a casino. The student suggested that he should wear both to suggest that Rose was conflicted and did both play baseball and gamble. So the student showed Rose sitting in his baseball uniform but not on the bench at the stadium but instead at a gambling house, where people were playing poker and horses were racing in the background. He gave Rose a sad expression to indicate his position and he used the impasto method to make the gamblers and horses in the background stand out just as prominently as he made Rose's bat and glove stand out that were in the foreground.
b. Providing Students with Choice to Deepen Understanding of Concepts
I provided students with opportunities for student choice in ways that deepened their understanding of visual art concepts/contexts as the students created visual art by allowing them to come up with and develop their own subject and concept for the painting using the methods of expression that we had discussed in class. Thus each student had the personal choice to choose what was special in his or her own life and use that as a starting point for creating their painting. I helped them identify ways of expressing their subject in Baroque terms but only enough to get them going. Once they caught on to the idea, they moved rapidly in the right direction and became very engaged in the process of using the Baroque method to express something that was important to them in their own lives.
5. Analyzing Teaching
a. Changes to Make to Instruction
Changes I would make to my instruction for the whole class would be to expand this lesson over two classes instead of one so that we could take the time to more fully engage with the ideas and concepts that were being explored in the class. The students all raised interesting points that we could discuss at length but time constraints obliged us to push forward.
Thus in a future plan I would design the lesson to allow for more time for discussion so that we could connect ideas to history within the visual arts world, looking both backward and forward in time…
This taught them to see why they valued what they did. In a cultural way, this link was made by showing how though cultures and times change, some things stay the same and their knowledge of European history was connected to new knowledge of modern times when I showed them each how the subject they chose could be traced back to the Baroque era through historical channels. Their knowledge of community was also linked because they already had a sense of how they all belonged to a society and now they could see how groups interlinked through things like school and common interests like sports or movies or religion. We did this at the end of class after the students had taken some time to begin with their painting exercises and this allowed us to wrap up our day with a quick examination of ourselves and how we had connected.
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