Musings about the importance and impact of art and art education in the 21st century.

Beautiful Oops

♠ Posted by ArtMuse in at 11:09 AM

Tuesday is back to school day and I've been thinking about what I will be doing as my first day lesson.  Usually, I create a yearly teaching goal/theme for myself and my students to work on and then create a 1st day lesson that introduces the students to the theme we will be exploring all year.  

Two years ago I chose classroom management, specifically, 'how can I make my students work more independently in the art-room?' For that,  I did a art-room scavenger hunt on the first day and we then discussed the rules, procedures, expectations, and what it meant to be independent in art.

Last year I my focus question was 'how can I better teach viewing and discussing artworks?'. For that, I had my students create a list of things to think about while viewing work and we then while modeling and practicing these ideas, we discussed how to brainstorm, generate meaningful questions, and debate topics. 

This year, I'm thinking of the topic of problem solving and challenging myself to focus on the question 'how can I teach creative problem solving skills using art?'  
 I really feel like creative problem solving is something lacking in school these days, mostly because of the tremendous amount of state testing and test prep that has to be drilled in the general education classrooms all year.  I think it's so important for students to be able to problem solve independently, problem solve collaboratively, and understand that many times, there are multiple solutions for problems and that there is not always one 'right' answer, as they are so often taught because of these tests.  Also, it's important for them to understand that working through 
problems takes time, effort, patience, and perseverance, and that making  mistakes are part of the learning process.  

So in the spirit of problem solving I've posted 2 videos from youtube of Barney Saltzberg and his book Beautiful Oops, which illustrates in a very age-appropriate way, that making mistakes isn't just o.k. but an inherent part of the creative process. 

A thanks to Keeping The Mistakes for her mention of the book and her link to the video which helped to inspire this post!