Conant's Visual Arts Program
The Visual Arts curriculum emphasizes development of student's skills and understanding of creating (art): promotes knowledge and understanding of the historical and cultural context of the arts; uses a variety of assessment methods to make connections among the arts, with other disciplines within the core curriculum, and with arts resources in the community. (Massachusetts Arts Curriculum Frameworks)
The art teacher and classroom teachers at Conant work together to make connections among disciplines. Classroom teachers integrate visual arts with many projects in their classrooms, and students have a weekly art class with an art specialist. Art classes deal with art concepts while linking art to other content areas. Kindergarten students have a 30 minute art class, and students in grade 1 through 6 have a 45 minute class.
Students create and assess their own art as well as look at and discuss art from other cultures and periods in history. Student art work is displayed throughout the school.
Students keep a portfolio of drawings done at the beginning and end of each school year. They add a page of drawings in September and again in June, so that by the end of sixth grade their portfolios contain as many as 12 pages documenting their development from K through grade 6. Each page includes drawings of a person, animal, building and machine. Students receive these portfolios to take home at their grade 6 graduation.
Art units comply with the Massachusetts Arts Curriculum Frameworks Five Learning Strands:
- Students will demonstrate knowledge of the methods and materials unique to visual arts.
- Students will demonstrate knowledge of the elements (color, line, shape, form, texture, value, space) and principles of design (unity, balance, pattern, contrast, rhythm, movement, emphasis).
- Students will demonstrate their powers of observation, abstraction and invention by using a variety of media and materials.
- Students will demonstrate knowledge of the process of creating their own artwork: drafts, critique, self-assessment, refinement, exhibition.
- Students will describe and analyze their own work and the work of others using appropriate vocabulary, and interpret the meanings of works citing structural elements and expressive qualities to justify their interpretations.