A choice based program allows students to home into specific personal interests, and take control of their own learning. This in turn, is a great motivator and generally there is 100% engagement happening in ‘Our Studio’. As students are becoming familiar with ways in which they can navigate the environment, many are arriving with preconceived ideas regarding how they wish to spend their time. The teacher can then guide and facilitate this, expose them to possibilities, new art vocabulary, and further assist students in making personal connections to the art world.

Example: For weeks on end Jaden’s choice as been to draw buildings. Every week they look the same. Noticing this repeated behaviour, it was suggested that he try something new. “But I LOVE drawing buildings” says Jaden. He explains his personal connection to a specific city, which is well known for it’s stunning architecture and we began to find images to take a closer look at details. Jaden learned that artists can create ‘cityscapes’.

We then embarked on some brief research into the artist Stephen Wiltshire

Artist traits such as closely observing, engaging, and perseverance was discussed and with this Jaden has discovered a greater determination for detail, working up until the last minute of art class. I’m personally hoping this personal connection may spur Jaden’s interest in finding new art forms in which to express his ideas, as the school year continues. We currently have Drawing, Painting and Collage stations open now. Slowly construction and printmaking shall emerge in the second semester.  

Please enjoy this short video about the fascinating story for Stephen Wiltshire. Many, more lengthy documentaries, can be found on Youtube.