Thursday, October 23, 2014


the artists that i plan to profile are flo oy wong, brandon stanton, nyugen smith, and more.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

webquest planning

A lot of the time, it is difficult to find a way to engage students in online web-quest activities. Flashback to my own experiences four years ago when a handful of students in the classroom would take the assignment seriously while the rest of the class hurried to get answers on their papers—ignoring all indications that this information was supposed to stick with them.  I’ve come to find that in this fast-paced digital age, students are most engaged with references that they find familiarity in. When students have the opportunity to utilize skills they currently possess in order to further their educational journey, they feel empowered both as a learner and as a teacher. They are effectively completing both parts of this duality as they teach themselves more advanced skills in technological fields and learn information in the process. By interweaving cultural nuances with my web-quest plan, students will leave the lesson with a greater understanding of the dialogue between the digital and analog worlds within the realm of art education.

The lesson would be prefaced with a scenario, which would most likely be presented in an engaging visual manner—most likely a video. I would present students with a backstory to dictate their journey through the week’s lesson. One idea that I theorized is a Carmen Sandiego-esque chase around the globe to find a “stolen” art piece. Students would begin at one location (the scene of the crime) and travel through time and space to investigate the stolen piece both artistically and thematically.The lesson could go in a few different directions with this as the basis, and it could be adapted with more challenging concepts for the lower or higher level grades. It could even tie in aspects from historically true art theft, which would emphasize an element of art history.

Task & Process
·         Use the technology of google maps to locate specific works of art around the world, in order to formulate an understanding of the piece that was taken. The setup of this exploration would leave clues in each city to lead students to the next location and the next important content to study.
·         Some cities could require students to investigate related works on different websites in order to get a better idea of inspiration, context, or pieces inspired by another work.
·         There would be a rhyme and reason as to why students travelled to a certain number of cities in a certain order, which they would discover at the completion of their technological journey.
·         The idea of “appropriation” could be addressed within the lesson to combat the idea of “stealing” in the art world
·         The culmination of the project should include students creating a work of art that responds to what they learned during their journey (both around the world and educationally). This could come in the form of a stop motion video to parallel their frequent stops along the way, a 3D sculpture of found objects to comment on the themes of discovery in this lesson, or anything else regarding means of travelling (can be metaphorical).

My teaching philosophy is based on the philosophy that students’ art can never go too far. Everything is created for a reason, and whiles school districts will never be in agreement with completely uncensored work, I feel it is important as an educator to allow students to express themselves however they see fit. I want my students to be unapologetic art creators, to be audacious in their curiosity and construction. I want them to feel a hunger to complete a project and make their next project ten times better, constantly embracing their self-worth and striving to further their skills as an artist. When art relates to life or life relates to art, it is easiest for students to find the link between the two. By doing so, they can effectively apply these principles to everyday scenarios, and thus maintain the information they’re learning through synthesizing it. The purpose of a web-quest is to end up at a different point than you began, and by implementing a fast-paced travel-based experience, I hope to accomplish exactly that.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

technology in education? I ship that.

In the age dominated by social media, accessibility to information is at an all-time high—constantly oscillating the roles of teacher and student through web-based media. Children and adolescents alike are able to edit, contribute, report, and read volumes of sources birthed by the internet. A large portion of this demographic inevitably feels more comfortable in front of a computer screen than in a place of learning, but what’s to say these locations are mutually exclusive?

The debate of whether or not educational technology should be used in the classroom often argues the merits of traditional versus progressive education. It forgets to shed light on the responsibility of educators to provide technological resources outside the classroom. As Castro comments in Learning and Teaching Art: Through Social Media, “Learning, especially in art, is no longer limited to a classroom,” rather, it is a continuous process given the resources the twenty-first century has provided us with.

The existence of art-based websites and applications create artist-based communities that provide a wide array of inspiration for those who network with them. Forums make it simple to communicate with other artists, who are nearly always open to discussions or other collaborative interactions. Using technology to improve your skills and knowledge continue to fall under the umbrella of “educational technology.” Although the word technology in itself sparks ideas of machines, the definition categorizes it as “the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes”—which follows closely with the goals of art education as well. How can you motivate students to apply their methodical knowledge of art to their daily life? How can we make the abstract metamorphose into the practical? 

As students’ daily life is engulfed by visual culture both in the imagery that their eyes devour and the design elements that dictate the objects they frequently use, the applications that are emerging open up an entirely new dialogue between the analog and digital worlds. Tumblr, as profiled by Yenni with commentary from the majority of the class, has created a realm with its own jargon to describe popular culture. The subcultures beneath the reigning website name re-imagine imagery, re-contextualizing it into what readers, fans, or artists believed it should have been to begin with. The ability to appropriate work into different plotlines to tell brand new stories is powerful. This open-ended philosophy in an art-based community spoke volumes about what I hope to harness in my future teaching pedagogy. There is never a limit on what you can create. If the materials you originally wanted are not available, your idea is malleable. It can be done in an infinite combination of other materials. If you are emotionally invested in your work, you do not have to be afraid to express the amount of love you planted in it. You can ship yourself and your work. That’s totally fine. You can appropriate other work to make a point. You can re-imagine your world however you would like. You can even make up your own language if that is what your project needs. I think the amount of personality expressed by the depths of the Tumblr universe perfectly parallels the art world—even the levels of satire and hatred that penetrate each realm, respectively. There is a lot to learn from the tight-knit communities of each.

As far as technology in education? I totally ship that.