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I am in the first stretch of my Student Teaching experience at the Elementary level (my art classroom for the student teaching experience shown above). The first week of student teaching is exciting and nerve racking at the same time. I have come to find that the main challenge is finding out what lessons my cooperating teacher, Mrs. Mary Olson, has taught thus far in the school year and creating lessons that build off the skills and knowledge they have learned in those lessons.
General First Week Student Teaching Criteria:
1. Observe Cooperating Teacher and assist in lessons.
2. Become knowledgeable about school building and facilities.
3. Be aware of school policy and rules.
4. Discuss past and future lessons (expectations of Cooperating Teacher).
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In my cooperating teacher’s 4th grade classes, they have been working on a contour drawing of the American Gothic painting by Grant Wood. In this particular project, instead of creating an exact replica, the students are asked to change the face of one of the people in the painting to anything from a cartoon face to a fox. In the picture above it shows the program that Mrs. Olson uses, called the Notebook. This Notebook program allows her to draw, in a series of steps on different pages, each step of the drawing. This process is helpful for elementary levels because the students need to learn how to approach an image, but the creative part is creating a different person or character in the drawing.
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Later in the project, after the students are done drawing in pencil, they trace their drawings with a permanent marker. Once they have erased all pencil marks, they are ready to start using watercolor paints. Mrs. Olson has a great saying that reminds her students that they do not need to cake on the color with watercolors. She says “keep it light and lovely.”
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Follow me this semester to share in my experience and see what lessons I plan to teach in Mrs. Olson’s K-5th grade classes!