I created a short film to introduce the design brief of the insect chairs unit to S1 & S2. It was successful in a number of ways; it gave pupils an idea of the area (Kelvingrove Museum) they needed to design the chair for and also inspired and enthused the pupils into trying harder than they would have with a normal unit introduction.
Below you will find a typical layout for a unit plan. After all the practical elements have been thought up, and all the practical tasks have been tried and tested, the timing is arranged for each section of the lesson. This is by no means a great unit layout as there were serious timing issues when put into practice.
When starting teaching you must allow time and tasks for things to go too quickly or slowly… it means that teachers always create more prep than they need, but it is an easier job if they are prepared.
The above file is a Microsoft Word Document (.doc)
Below you will find a simple quiz sheet covering simple critical aspects for S1 or S2 Mexican Art. The pupils should be shown elements of each of the artists contained (I mixed between Powerpoint presentation and art book resources). Using more than one critical artist allows the pupil to decide on which they like best and why they like the artist, allowing for a more diverse and personal response from each pupil.
A simple resource sheet helps the pupil pre-plan what type of pattern should be used with their chosen animal. After viewing Mexican Oaxacan art the pupil has taken in several ways to make the texture of their animal into a bright beautiful pattern. This sheet allows them to plan out use of shape and colour of the pattern as well as the undercoats. It means that pupils are not diving straight into painting without thinking of their design first. Pupils rushing in can often ruin the best artwork.
As a little taster, below you will find the unfinished final pieces of a ‘Mexican Pinata Puppet’ unit devised for S2 Pupils at Thomas Aquinas in Glasgow. This unit was ran over a 4 week period, so the steps had been rushed, though the pupils had been keen to finish and so attended break and lunch time classes. The puppet’s heads should have contained a little sweet, though that had been advised against.
There were many tough elements in this unit for pupils to handle; Changing 2D drawings to 3D structures, achieving a smooth surface on the papier mache and getting good paint coverage on the puppet heads. The bodies of the puppets are photographed unfinished. I do not know if the pupils were given the chance to finish them off.
This blog has been created for a number of reasons:
1) It is an output for the pupils, a reward for good practice, easily published and accessed.
2) It displays the positive aspects of reflective practice, teachers normally spend a lot of their time reflecting on things that went wrong and not the things that have gone well. This is my attempt to set the balance right.
3) It may inspire new units or a development of the older units contained within it. I do not mind if fellow teachers take from the content. I would even enjoy if fellow teachers contact me to allow their content to be published on the site.
If you would like to contact me in regards to anything contained on the site, I will be happy to discuss it.