Final Reflections

What worked?

Teaching Artist Reflection: The students really focused on self portraiture once we broke the steps down for them. They were especially engaged in the addition of the features of the main character onto their own. However, I felt the sixth graders were very focused when we taught the block printing technique. This was a new art form and they worked very diligently and carefully from the carving to the inking processes.

Also, the journal sketchbooks were used consistently between the classroom and the visual art room. Ms. German's writing prompts helped shape the visual art projects and content.

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. The choice of novels I think really gave the teaching artist and I slot to work with. When the students realized that we too had read the book, I think it helped them realized the importance of the assignment.


Teacher Reflection:Having the children read the novel and tie the concepts within the novel to art. Having the children connect to the main character and give such strong reactions and emotions to how he was feeling.

What did not work?

Teaching Artist Reflection: It was a struggle to have the students write during the art sessions. They lost focus very quickly.

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: Everything worked out just fine.

What questions do you still have?

Teaching Artist Reflection: The sketchbook journal was constantly used between language arts classes and the art sessions. I'm wondering if the 6th graders could use a journal again for a smaller scale arts integrated unit that could be done between Ms. Moore and Ms. German.

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: None.

What new ideas do you have?

Teaching Artist Reflection: The sessions made me think about new ways to incorporate writing more effectively into art sessions. I don't have an answer yet, but I am researching and planning for future classes.

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. I also wonder if more writing assignments in the art room (with reinforcement from the language arts teacher) would provide more opportunities for students to write reflectively for a variety of reasons.

Teacher Reflection: To incorporate art into all of the subjects taught at Fort Dearborn.

Year One
2011-2012
Year Two
2012-2013
Year Three
2013-2014

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