24 October 2011

In with the old

Find the updated project here
This project was not fully cooked when I started teaching it. It's also lain dormant for at least two years, maybe four. I really did have some good ideas in the olden days, but they do need to be reexamined and revamped to work now.

I'm teaching Spanish 3 now for the first time, and art-related lessons are sort of de rigeur for such a course. Students will be making voicethreads about artist-activists, for which I pre-selected a handful and let them choose among them. I wanted to cut off the excuse of not enough information, but I would like to open the project up more in the future. I also didn't want 2 students to have unfair advantages because I already had materials on Kahlo and Botero...plus a girl's gotta give examples, right?

However, I had to adapt my presentation and my approach as I dusted off the electronic cobwebs on my Botero presentation. Here's what I changed:

1. Updated information
What's true about Botero's art has not changed significantly in the last 4 years (that I'm aware), but Colombia did go from #3 in the world for antipersonal mines to #2. Yikes. I also added a link to the Remangate YouTube video (which gives me chills and makes me cry every time).

2. Total TL...almost
I may not teach even 80% in the TL, even in Spanish 3 yet (I get too tired to keep it up, still!), but I figured that all of the written input could be in Spanish by that level, and that I could paraphrase in Spanish along with it, using context clues like gestures along with the pictures provided to get the point across. And though I aspire to have an "English box" where students have to go to speak English in my classroom, I am not there yet, and I still encourage some of them to shout out what they're thinking, kind of like we're playing charades...which...we kind of are.

Also, I had a provision in the original project allowing Spanish 1 to formulate their own activist statements in English; it has been eradicated. Just as I am pushing simple Spanish in their outside-of-class activities, that may or may not be "correct," they need to take risks at least making an artistic statement here. And, I had students stop for each pop-up question and respond in Spanish. However, I did still let them talk it out in English (New Schools Project calls it "classroom talk," and it is one of the 6 strategies we espouse).

3. Break it down
I am out sick with no voice today, so I'm having students submit their artistic statements through Edmodo, and I made it clear they needed 3 parts: the problem to be addressed, how it'll be depicted (with respect to proportion, position, and color), and how it connects to Botero's art. Statements were a little wishy-washy back in the day, even though they were in English.

Also, I insisted that students draw before taking it to the sculptural level to make sure that it was not just play dough time. Not that the sculptures weren't cute the first time, but they did not exactly make use of position or color most of the time and were harder to interpret.

In the future, I think I would like to take more time to debate (in Spanish) good topics to portray and how they can be portrayed, too. When the art is finished, I think we should have a little gallery walk, too.

No comments:

Post a Comment