April 12, 2017 – Session at Roosevelt Middle School, Create Studio with presenters Brooke Toczlowski and Carl Barone.
Participants: Blanka Soltys/Fremont; Aracely Sifuentes/Melrose Leadership Academy; Claudia Goodman-Hough/Redwood Heights, Lisa Hoffman/Redwood Heights,Jamie Treacy/Skyline; JohnChristie/Castlemont; Deborah Gordon/Castlemont, Nestor Gonzalez/Dewey; Leah Jensen/McClymonds), Julia / Maker Education, Michelle Lewis/Glenview, John Christie/Castlemont; Amber Miller/Chabot, Kristen Vetterlein/Grass Valley, Carl Barone/Roosevelt-presenter, Brooke Toczylowski/Oakland International High-presenter, Ann Wettrich/OUSD VAPA team facilitator.
What is the relationship between art and maker education? Brooke and Carl Barone teamed up to present a dynamic professional development session in Roosevelt’s Create Maker Studio.
Part I – We began thinking about the similarities and contrasts between art and maker education. Working in small groups we charted ideas and shared out for whole group discussion. A few highlights: We realized that it’s all about intentionality and how we focus what we teach. Art history, aesthetics and meaningful personal expression are relevant to the arts and perhaps not to maker education where engineering and problem solving are prioritized. Making is critical to both and propels the thinking, innovation, discovery and learning.
Part II – Brooke gave out two useful documents to help us consider teaching, learning and assessment strategies across the realms of art and maker education: ) Studio Habits of Mind—outlining the eight habits that arts education cultivates—stretch and explore, express, develop craft, envision, understand arts community, observe, engage and persist and reflect; and Agency by Design guide emphasizing the maker skills of Looking Closely, Exploring Complexity and Finding Opportunity. We took time to review and discuss.
Part III – Carl talked about his work at Roosevelt and his ongoing work in developing a maker space and studio. He emphasized how successes and failures have helped him to iterate and revise his curriculum, projects and teaching. He is grappling with ADA issues in his basement space with a broken elevator and a lack of tools and materials. A cooking project failed because there were too many moving parts, while a woodworking project flourished with the revival of the school’s former wood shop. He has also been successful with collage and paper mache projects. Giving students choice and cultivating agency are among his top priorities and goals.
Part IV – Carl and Brooke engaged us in a Parts, Purposes and Complexities hands-on exercise involving the construction of a paper circuit. We began by observing and discussing in small groups. Then we were given materials to work with and tasked to make one of our own paper circuits—with the additional challenge of integrating it into am artwork that represents something about ourselves.
Part V – We did a gallery walk and debrief—sharing our work, process, learning and discoveries—thinking again about different disciplinary strategies that we utilized.
Studio Thinking 2: The Real Benefits of Visual Arts Education by L. Hetland, E. Winner, S. Veenema and K. Sheridan
The Art of Tinkering by Karen Wilkinson and Mike Petrich