Monday, November 7, 2011


Today, I was a drabby art teacher. I had two days at the art conference (which should amp me up) and instead I was lost on where to take my kids next. I have my pacing guide, which I meticulously planned at the beginning of the year, and for my Art Is I am doing great, but Art II is STRUGGLIN'. I have 3 -4 students who are always about 4-5 days ahead of the rest of the group FOR EVERY PROJECT. I have tried multiple things inluding, but not limited to: moving the one's ahead on, asking the ones behind to stay after school, having a side "fun project" for the one's ahead to work on, letting them do homework, let them go to the library,etc. If I let the one's ahead move on , the one's behind NEVER catch up, and then I can never put up a display, grading becomes difficult...blah blah blah. I have had one student stay after school, and she still is so far behind. At least half of my students who are ahead and have been assigned a side project (not knowing it was extra work) complained and did a very crappy job. I am lost. I have sort of complained about this group a lot in my head. They are a difficult bunch, and now I have 6 weeks left and today I contemplated letting them do book work for the next 6 weeks since they complain about almost everything I have them do. Let me tell you, I search high and low for fun stuff for them. They literally said they would just rather sit and do nothing than art. WOW!!!! I just can't believe it. I am glad I don't have this group of ArtIIs for a whole year.

Well, I guess I had to vent, but has anyone ever came across a class like this, and if so HELP!!!! (or feel free to complain in the comment section about your frustrations!).


  1. Yikes Amy, what a pain! I feel you though! When I was student teaching in 8th grade, I had this whole idea on making Duct Tape art! I got Michaels to give me a huge bulk discount on a massive amount of awesome duct tape colors and had the counseling department that had excess funds give the art department some of their funds to purchase the duct tape! I had all kinds of cool examples of woven duct tape purses, clothes wallets etc... showed them the contest that duct tape does every year where students design a duct tape prom gown & suit etc..etc... I was PUMPED and in my head just KNEW they would have to love it! THEY WHINED AND COMPLAIED THE WHOLE DAMN TIME!!!!!! "why are we doing this?" "this is so stupid!" "I hate using this dumb tape it's such a pain in the butt" and on and on and on! I was literally fuming because I thought they would LOVE it and they acted miserable! Then I realized, "oh they are in 8th grade and when I was in 8th grade I would have NEVER admitted that anything that my teacher thought of was fun or cool" Anyhow, the point is that at the end of the lesson and when I was leaving the school I had SO MANY of them telling me on the side, how awesome that project was and that they loved it, they had never done such a fun lesson in art before etc.. So I guess my point is that you can't really listen to what those little moody teens say! They are going to act like you suck and anything that you come up with sucks even if they don't actually think that. See, this is why I have to teach 5th and under, I don't think my ego could handle anything older just yet! :-) Good luck girl!

  2. I have a 14:1:1 class, a mixture of 5th and 6th, that finish EVERY project in 3 days, max! By the time I'm done teaching a lesson, I have to make sure I have the next 3 prepared. I understand they don't have the artistic ability and fine motor skills as other students their age, so they scribble and have the tendencies of K-2 graders, but at the same time, they would DEFINITELY realize if we were doing younger elementary projects. Along with that... they are COMPLETELY rude and inappropriate, well most of them. A majority of them are boys, they're obviously less mature than other boys their age, they are DEFINITELY going through pre-puberty and everything that comes along with that, and they can NOT stop saying inappropriate comments.

    Long story short, today was their last day of the quarter!!! I hate to say it, but it is the BIGGEST weight lifted off my shoulder. I can't stop admitting that I had a huge smile on my face the whole day, and I feel terrible (but really great at the same time, hee hee).

    As far as a suggestion, Christina made me think of something I did when I was student teaching. Well.. my host teacher started it. She made this gigantic paper mache thing, I already can't remember, but it can be easily anything, like your school mascot. And whenever anyone is done, they all collaboratively work on it. It might get a little "I don't wanna do this" in the middle, but you can just force them to do it. Ha. I also have sketchbooks for everyone that have about 30 prompts and whenever a student finishes 3 complete, well thought, creative pieces, they can pick 2 things from our prize box.

    Anywho, I feel ya, and good luck! Now I'm just crossing my fingers that the next batch of students for the next 3 quarters will be better.


I would love to hear what you think!