Monday, May 5, 2014

The Teaching Like an Artist Framework

I've written much about how to teach like an artist or the benefits of it throughout the blog. Ultimately what these thoughts are pointing to is a framework for project-based lessons. It possibly could be a starting point for planning any lesson, but it also is useful in evaluating the lesson or in providing a lens for reflection afterward.

Briefly, here are the components of the framework:
  • The vision, dream or idea - What was the core idea that led to the lesson? This could be a goal or an end result that was imagined before anything else.
  • Realization through work - What obstacles had to be worked through in order for the vision, idea or goal to come into reality? This is mostly a question for the teacher as she sees her lesson take life. The learners can answer from their perspective, as they are experiencing their own journey through the learning process.
  • Reflecting - There is so much potential for learning all around us that we will miss it without reflection. Reflect on the purpose of a learning experience. Whether or not the vision came to reality, reflect on all the learning. Also, in what ways did the work (or could the work) cause others to reflect and ask questions?
  • Sharing - What was created that could be shared? What did you learn or the students learn that could be shared? What questions came from it that need to be asked of others? This sharing opens the door for connections on many levels and those lead to the final component...
  • Inspire - I believe a good part of inspiration (encouragement to keep going) comes from realizing you've done something no one else could have done quite the same. Regardless of how small the work of art is, recognize the uniqueness and what it means for future works. This lies at the heart of passion, purpose and potential--the ingredients of a full life. It will inspire the artist and everyone who gets to enjoy the art. Look for it and celebrate it in your work and the work of others.

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