Unique and diverse, kind and artistic, as well as self-motivated are just some of the ways to describe my middle school students. Some of them come from wonderful city homes and some are rural foster students. They all have one major thing in common, they crave life, art, and a fulfilling challenge.
Middle school can be a hard transition from child to young adult.
My students need to feel understood and be allotted the responsibility they deserve. I consider them young adults, as stated above. My job is to teach my subject area, but it is also to teach the navigation of life. My students understand that, and due to the respect I deeply have for them as human beings, they have amazing and astonishing respect for me and our classroom.
I would like to give them the comfortable space and materials they do not even know they deserve, so that they can thrive in a world they do not even fully know they are already succeeding at.
My students need more space to be creative, learn techniques, and become comfortable with themselves. I have seating for 24 but often have between 30 to 35+ students. They will sit on rugs I have collected, at my desk, on the floor, and even pull a stool up to the window sill. The window sill is only about 6.5 inches, but the student's paper is often between 8 to 20 inches. This is why we are asking for five easel benches. They give awesome space and are easily movable.
Seating in this classroom can be extra frustrating, in an already frustrating time of life, for my students.
The beauty of what we have created in my classroom is a freedom to express differences safely. A respect for artists and art, even if you do not agree with its content or enjoy viewing it, is what I expect. We learn understanding and compassion for our neighbor. This can be very hard when a table made for six has ten bodies at it. Elbow bumping does not make "happy" artists and "patient" life-learners.
I teach life as well as art. We learn how to manage in crowds like we will in the workforce. We learn techniques in art that we will use in life to compile a fulfilling, manageable, and enjoyable future. We learn how to communicate through disagreements, and overcome internal and external challenges. All of that can be accomplished and great art can be made, but we need a little room to breath.
If you donated to this project, you can sign in to leave a comment for Mrs. Allegre.
DonorsChoose is the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.
As a teacher-founded nonprofit, we're trusted by thousands of teachers and supporters across the country. This classroom request for funding was created by Mrs. Allegre and reviewed by the DonorsChoose team.
DonorsChoose makes it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need. Public school teachers from every corner of America create classroom project requests, and you can give any amount to the project that inspires you.