Since I switched to format of my class to what I refer to as a "Gamified TAB" classroom, students have been happy and engaged in creating all sorts of different projects. Students pick their projects and earn their marker badge, clay badge, printmaking badge etc. The problem is in my initial rollout, almost everything was centered on the creation aspect of art. Now I am creating new badges for investigation, presentation etc. I created a comfy corner in my classroom where students can read and relax because exploring art history is a perfectly valid way to spend one's time in art class. Students can earn a badge by looking through my books and finding an artist they like, then they simply present the artist and 3 strategies that artist used to make their work awesome. This analysis piece gives some purpose and direction to the students as they explore and helps hold them accountable to demonstrate their learning.
Of course not all students like to read about art, and new media provide new opportunities to reach students. I decided to start a new video and podcast series Who ARTed to help students learn more about a variety of artists. Each episode will focus on a different artist/culture. My guest and I will discuss the historical context, closely examine a piece and finally share our takeaways or tips to make better art based on what we learned from the piece. The hope is that this will not only create an engaging way for students to explore art history, but it will also help them hear and understand the vocabulary of the arts.
This will be a podcast released weekly and a video version of each episode will also be released weekly on my youtube channel. The first episode will be released soon. Please subscribe, write a review and tell your friends about the new podcast of art history for all ages.