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Art Education Continues During Virtual Days
Art Education Continues During Virtual Days
Posted on 04/07/2020
A Leicester Elementary School student creates a radial symmetry art piece at home. By Tim Reaves
BCS Communications Department

BCS art teachers are finding innovative ways to keep creativity flowing during Virtual Days.

Through online collaboration with colleagues and constant contact with families, art instruction is continuing at a distance. Children are taking art out of the classroom and into the world, making new connections, and growing to think about things differently.

“It’s a challenge and it’s fascinating,” said Ms. Lissa Pedersen, Leicester Elementary School art teacher and 2019 Erwin District Teacher of the Year who also teaches at Woodfin Elementary. “It’s exciting to learn how to do this authentically. I’m thinking ‘what do I want the kids to get out of this time?’”

Ms. Pedersen and other art teachers are presenting the subject matter in smaller bites and focusing on letting students know that they care.

“We’re keeping ourselves open and available, keeping authenticity in the lessons, and letting them know we’re going to see them again,” she said.

Her lessons have always been fascinating, from observations of unique artists to 3D models to mind-expanding explorations of color wheels. Some of her Virtual Days lessons have included art projects inspired by household and outdoor objects like flowers and grass. One lesson asks kids to draw themselves dancing in a way that captures motion in a single frame. Another asks them to create human figures out of magazine and newspaper cutouts. The assignment documents themselves have an artistic flow meant to spur creativity.

“They’re looking at the colors around them, the objects, and asking ‘what am I looking at here?’ Ms. Pedersen said. “Hopefully this expands horizons. I hope they’re looking at ways they can go deeper. When you can see the same things in new ways, that’s why we continue to see new art. We want them to grow and think about things differently. This is a conversation that has been going on for thousands of years, and they find themselves in it.”

There’s a silver lining to Virtual Days online classes, she added. Instead of art being mostly based in the classroom, now parents get to see more directly how interesting and inventive the lessons are.

“This is an opportunity to get the kids to associate art with home,” she said. “It’s also a way to increase communication with families and for children to engage with their families in a way that centers art.”

    Buncombe County Schools is in the process of reviewing its website to ensure compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Buncombe County Schools does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its education programs or activities and is required by Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 and federal regulations to not discriminate in such a manner. This requirement extends to admission and employment. Inquiries about the application of Title IX and its implementing federal regulations may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator and/or the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education. The Title IX Coordinator's contact information is: Shanon Martin, shanon.martin@bcsemail.org, 828-255-5918, 175 Bingham Road, Asheville, NC 28806.

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