Monday, April 28, 2014

"It's Not Just Art: A Complicated Conversation with Teachers"


“It’s Not Just Art: A Complicated Conversation with Teachers"
Opening reception: Thursday, May 22nd, 2014 from 6:00-10:00 p.m.
Exhibition dates May 22-May 26

Firecat Projects
2124 N Damen Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

What are our preconceived notions around the role of the art teacher within public education today? How can we better understand the complicated and rich teaching practices of teachers within the art studio and core content classrooms? Why do we need art teachers? Who are these art teachers (as teachers, as artists, as people)? Who is witness to their evolution? What does it mean to say, “oh, it’s just art?”

Since 2011, Arts at the Center at the Center for College Access and Success at NEIU has been working with a group of dedicated art and content teachers in the Chicago Public Schools using Lois Hetland’s Studio Thinking Framework as a lens for critically examining their teaching practice and understanding student thinking. This is an adaptive, thoughtful and responsive community committed to learning from and sharing with each other. The group draws upon each other’s expertise and responds to changes as they emerge in the classroom, across the District and within their teaching practice. As a University program, we are a hybrid of educators, artists, researchers and ethnographers that fosters artistic thinking within an academic setting. Collectively, we are working through and working towards a deeper understanding of the nature of artistic thinking processes.

We are inviting the public into a dialogic conversation around our teaching practices. This conversation strengthens our work. Students’ learning is expanded when teachers become self aware of their own practices. A new understanding is created through this rigorous conversation. We invite you to come and participate.