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.
Specifically, these standards suggest that:
- 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 Language of Art Unit addresses some of these standards:
- Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes: Students will "analyze what makes different media, techniques, and processes effective or not effective in communicating ideas" (Content Standard 1).
- Using knowledge of structures and functions: Students will "generalize about the effects of visual structures and functions and reflect upon these effects" (Content Standard 2).
- Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures: Students will "analyze and describe how factors of time and place (such as climate, resources, ideas, and technology) influence visual characteristics that give meaning and value to a work of art" (Content Standard 4).
- Reflecting upon and assessing the characteristics and merits of their work and the work of others:
- Students will "compare multiple purposes for creating works of art."
- Students will "analyze contemporary and historic meanings in specific artworks through cultural and aesthetic inquiry."
- Students will "describe and compare a variety of individual responses to artworks from various eras and cultures."
(Content Standard 5).
- Making connections between visual arts and other disciplines: Students will "describe ways in which the principles and subject matter of other disciplines taught in school are interrelated with the visual arts" (Content Standard 6).
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