Philosophy of Teaching and Learning

My philosophy of teaching and learning is to provide a classroom environment where students are encouraged to express their own ideas, explore creativity, and use their imagination.  In the classroom, students participate in a variety of art activities and learning experiences.  Although a hands-on experience is stressed, students engage in individual and group projects that guide students to a mastery of art skills, experience with art mediums, and develop knowledge of artists and cultures that produce art.

I strive to make my classroom a safe, productive, and comfortable learning environment where students become more confident and creative when they are encouraged and rewarded.  I believe students perform at higher levels of achievement when expectations and guidelines are clear and well communicated.    By tailoring my instructional methods, I work to encompass the variety of my students multiple intelligences, learning styles, and needs.  I also believe that students need to be involved in the learning process and more importantly have ownership in their learning.  When students are involved in this process, they have higher motivation and have more pride and ownership in their work.  Through the use of authentic assessment tools students receive effective and meaningful evaluation while allowing me to fully assess my student’s abilities and understanding.

In the classroom I challenge students to create relationships between art and historical events by studying the time periods and art movements artists worked in.  Students also gain experience using art criticism and making informed judgments when assessing their own artwork, critiquing peers’ artwork, and when discussing art reproductions.    Art allows students to look at information from new directions.   It opens new doors while offering different perspectives on their everyday forms of thinking and expression.  Art instruction provides creative mental challenges for students and it allows them the opportunity to think independently while continually problem-solving.  It also provides children with paths to self-discovery, self-expression, and self-confidence.   Classroom discussions and questioning techniques about art introduce students to higher order thinking.  In my classroom students are constantly challenged to make connections and meaningfully evaluations when discussing artwork?

As a teacher, I strive to establish a classroom environment that pushes students to discover their own abilities through constant opportunities. I believe that all students when engaged and challenged can and want to learn.  I do assume that my students all learn in different ways and are motivated by different things. I also believe that I am a life long learner and I will continue to seek out and continue my own education to find the best teaching strategies to most effectively teach all of my students.