Dec 19, 2014

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Where Are You on the Choice Spectrum?

Where Are You on the Choice Spectrum?

Starting January 1st, participants in our Choice Based Art Education class will be walking through three really important processes. Discovering where they stand today on the “Choice Spectrum.” Making a strategic decision about where they’d like to stand on the spectrum or what colors they would mix. Planning the process of reaching that goal in a way that fits their...

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Dec 19, 2014

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Make Your Stagnant Still Lifes Come Alive!

Make Your Stagnant Still Lifes Come Alive!

One of the best things about teaching middle school students is the fact that they are quite willing to try some unconventional ideas when it comes to creating art. Some of my students’ greatest successes have come from using materials in unexpected ways. This is especially true when those materials are combined with conventional subject matter, like that found in still life...

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Dec 18, 2014

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How to Collaborate with Other Creative Teachers to...

How to Collaborate with Other Creative Teachers to Form an Unstoppable Team

Editor’s Note: This week we’ve been talking about “The Art of Building Relationships.” While building relationships with other specialists is generally easier than with other staff members, it can be tricky to figure out the logistics. Today, Ian shares some great tips to get the ball rolling.     In the art room, students tend to work...

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Dec 17, 2014

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Make Classroom Teachers Your Allies With a Teacher...

Make Classroom Teachers Your Allies With a Teacher Cabinet

During my first year of teaching, I noticed a lot of classroom teachers coming into my art room wanting supplies. Sometimes I’d be teaching, sometimes I’d be in a plan period, and sometimes I wouldn’t even be in my room. At first, I was frustrated! I didn’t want to be interrupted while I was teaching or planning. And I really didn’t like searching for a supply that...

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Dec 16, 2014

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Why it Pays to Be BFFs With Your Custodian (and Ho...

Why it Pays to Be BFFs With Your Custodian (and How to Make it Happen)

Editor’s Note: Co-workers often play a big part in how much we enjoy our time at school. That’s why, we’re going to take the next few days to talk about “The Art of Building Relationships.” Jennifer Borel starts us off with some fantastic tips for befriending your custodian.     When I was student teaching, my cooperating teacher...

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Dec 16, 2014

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Mondrian Collage: Free Lesson Plan Download

Mondrian Collage: Free Lesson Plan Download

Level: K-2 Art Education Lesson Plan Art Elements: Line  and Shape Art Skills: Cutting, Gluing, Composition Art History: Mondrian * Get more free lessons like this, on our Lessons Page   By now, most of you have seen some version of this simple and classic Mondrian lesson. This is one of my favorite versions because it doesn’t take much time and is successful for most...

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Dec 15, 2014

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10 Simple Ways to Spice Up and Streamline Your Art...

10 Simple Ways to Spice Up and Streamline Your Art Curriculum

Writing curriculum can be a daunting and boring process, but it doesn’t have to be! Remembering that your curriculum is always a work in progress can free you to spice things up a bit and have a little fun. Here are some of my favorite tips to design a sound curriculum that is also fun and engaging for your students.     1. Design Your Own I believe every art...

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Dec 14, 2014

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Warm Up This Winter with 10 Essential Clay Tips

Warm Up This Winter with 10 Essential Clay Tips

In my art room, I chose to start the majority of my clay projects in January. It was great to come back from winter break to something fresh and exciting. Plus, there’s no better way to warm up than loading and unloading a kiln!   Here is a smattering of quick clay tips that kept me safe and saved my sanity when firing over 600 clay projects in a very short amount of...

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Dec 12, 2014

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Why You Should Demo Everything for Your Youngest S...

Why You Should Demo Everything for Your Youngest Students

  In the art room, there is a time and place for vague directions, experimentation, and exploration. But, sometimes specific, detailed, and modeled instructions are necessary for certain projects. My curriculum is set up in a way that allows for my youngest students to explore a material before we use the material for a project. I am not solely product-driven. But, the...

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Dec 11, 2014

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Beyond Glorified Babysitters: Jaw-Dropping Names A...

Beyond Glorified Babysitters: Jaw-Dropping Names Art Teachers Are Called

Each time I walked into a staff meeting in my building, I made a beeline for the table in the back of the room. At this table, I would congregate with the music teacher, P.E. teacher, media specialist, counselor and school nurse. We would sit in the back, horse around, doodle, and just hope we didn’t get called on to share. I called this special little table the “Island of...

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Dec 11, 2014

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Picasso Pop Can Portraits: Free Lesson Plan Downlo...

Picasso Pop Can Portraits: Free Lesson Plan Download

Level: Middle School Art Education Lesson Plan Art Elements: Line and Shape Art Skills: Sculpture, Drawing Art History: Picasso * Get more free lessons like this, on our Lessons Page     This unique project is a lot like middle schoolers themselves- wild, fun and unexpected! Not only are students excited to bring an empty can of their favorite soda, but they love to...

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Dec 10, 2014

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The Secret to Successful One-Day Clay Projects

The Secret to Successful One-Day Clay Projects

Editor’s Note: Hey AOE readers, bet you didn’t think we’d have TWO fabulous new writers to introduce this week. Well, we do! Today we’re thrilled to welcome our second new writer, Jennifer Carlisle. Jen hails from Nebraska, where she teaches 5th and 6th graders with a wealth of tips and tricks up her sleeve. Read on to see how to make one-day clay...

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