One of my favorite traditions in my classroom is our "Artist of the Week" presentations. For each class, grades 1-6, after they clean-up, we have a short interactive adventure on our SMARTBoard. This is great for a couple of reasons. One, it gives me an opportunity to share information about artists that I wouldn’t spend an entire unit on, but I still want to expose my students to. And two, it really gets the kids to clean up quickly!
Each week, the presentation is essentially the same format. At the end of class, a student is chosen to “drive” the SMARTBoard and they get to pull all the tabs and tap all the links. The Artist of the Week slides always include the artist’s name, biographical information and lots of visuals of their work.
This presentation has evolved over the years and I’ve loved sharing so much art history with my students.
The first year, I used artists’ birthdates as a starting point so that when October 8th came around, we learned about Faith Ringgold and at the end of October, we learned about Hokusai. The second year, we focused on just American artists and we travelled alphabetically through most of the fifty states and talked about the Wyeth family legacy, Matt Groening, Moneta Sleet Jr., and Jackson Pollock. The third year, I used the “Know the Artist” posters as a jumping off point to look at famous artists alphabetically so we moved from Milton Avery to Andy Warhol and beyond. Last year, I focused more on art criticism activities and used the Usbourne Book of Famous Paintings. It is a great resource for any art room, really gave us some great information and images in a child-friendly format and naturally flowed into a SMART Notebook file.
So, that brings us to this year! I’m so excited to be finished with this large file. As you can image, these kinds of technology endeavors take quite a bit of time to create and build, but I guess that’s what summer is for, right? I’ve always wanted to have a Word Wall like the traditional classroom teachers do, but wasn’t sure about the logistics. Now I’ve got one and it’s interactive! Please check out my file and download it from the SMART Exchange or pass it on to other art teachers you know and love: Word of the Week - Notebook File
Also, if you're interested, I've submitted my other Artist of the Week presentations to the SMART Exchange as well. Or you can check out my pbworks website at: Big Bend Art for a full listing of all of our Artists of the Week.