Relation to Standards
We have drawn on the National Standards for Arts Education [http://www.dcn.davis.ca.us/%7Eaeoltcap/nsaeaeol.html] outlined by the Consortium of National Arts Education Associations. These standards provide excellent guidelines for teachers on how to focus visual arts work in their classrooms.
We agree with the Consortium of National Arts Education Associations that students need to be encouraged and supported in their development of artistic abilities.
- Students should have ample time to experiment with artistic media so that they may explore "the multifaceted interplay of different media, styles, forms, techniques, and processes in the creation of their work."
- Students should be involved in artistic endeavors that help them "develop increasing abilities to pose insightful questions about contexts, processes, and criteria for evaluation."
- Artistic experiences should be developed that help students "understand the relationships among art forms and between their own work and that of others." This process helps students "relate understandings about the historical and cultural contexts of art to situations in contemporary life...." and gives them a "broad and in-depth understanding of the meaning and import of the visual world in which they live."
We also agree that "[a]s a result of developing these capabilities, students can arrive at their own knowledge, beliefs, and values for making personal and artistic decisions. In other terms, they can arrive at a broad-based, well-grounded understanding of the nature, value, and meaning of the arts as a part of their own humanity" (National Standards for Arts Education).
An evaluation of how the Comparing Landscapes Unit addresses some of these standards:
- Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes: Students will "apply media, techniques, and processes with sufficient skill, confidence, and sensitivity that their intentions are carried out in their artworks" (Content Standard 1).
- Choosing and evaluating a range of subject matter, symbols, and ideas: Students will "reflect on how art work differs visually, spatially, temporally, and functionally, and describe how these are related to history and culture" (Content Standard 3).
- Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures: Students will "analyze relationships of works of art to one another in terms of history, aesthetics, and culture, justifying conclusions made in the analysis and using such conclusions to inform their own art making" (Content Standard 4).
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