Teaching Artist Reflection: During a few art sessions, Ms. Mixon, came and sat in class and worked with students alongside Kim and myself. Her passion for the project was very evident. Having the students see their classroom teacher working and drawing side by side with us, helped the students realize the importance of the work they were doing.
MCLT Reflection: The collaboration worked, both with the classroom teachers and the teaching artist. We worked well as a team in both planning and execution of the units.
This year, the integration of literacy and visual arts seemed almost seamless. Concepts learned in one class served as a resource in the other. The students were able to more deeply explore ideas from the novel by through a variety of meaningful connections.
Teacher Reflection: The thing that worked best for my students was having the art teacher as a direct resource for allowing various students that enjoy art as an expressive outlet while reading.
What did not work?
Teaching Artist Reflection: Some of the abstract concepts were challenging for students to grasp and I think we were ambitious in the project we had them create. It took longer than we anticipated, however the end result works.
MCLT Reflection: Although students were engaged while working on their projects, they seem to work very differently than they do in the classroom. For this reason, writing assignments were not as successful when done in the art room. Surveys and lengthy writing assignments had to be done with the classroom teacher present. We had to make the necessary adjustments to get high quality, well thought out reflections from the students.
Teacher Reflection: Not having the opportunity to collaborate during the full day professional development. I feel I was out-of-the-loop when helping my students elaborate or expand their ideas within their portfolios.
What questions do you still have?
Teaching Artist Reflection: I would like to know if Ms. Mixon will continue to integrate art with her literacy in some way. She was very confident in our art classes about the drawing process that I can see her bringing that to her own classroom maybe again even in the form of a journal sketchbook that could be used for art and literacy.
MCLT Reflection: The few questions I have regarding this art integration project are as follows:
How can involved parties (general education teachers, fine arts instructors, etc.)analyze data regarding student growth due to this project over the years?
Will CAPE provide any additional art services for Chicago Public School students?
Teacher Reflection: Are there any professional developments teachers can attend to become fluent in arts integration? Can I receive additional information about art projects and concepts?
What new ideas do you have?
Teaching Artist Reflection: This year, the journal sketchbooks truly became "traveling sketchbooks." Students would draw, pasted and write reflection in them during the art sessions and then in their language art sessions, students would write responses to questions and reflections. I think this was very successful and wonder if both Kim and the classroom teachers could continue this next year even on a smaller scale.
MCLT Reflection: I would love to extend the integration to other subject areas. It would be exciting to include science, math and social studies under one umbrella with literacy and visual art. I imagine the planning time for such a unit would increase greatly, but if done in stages, it could be quite exciting learning experience for both students and teachers.
Teacher Reflections: Using art projects as monthly performance tasks in reading.