Color Your Artistic Reading Game Culturally, Cool Colors!
Help me give my students exposure to as many different cultures as possible, help them deepen their cultural awareness and build empathy through high-quality, well-vetted informational text and companion fiction books that can fuel their passion for reading.
We have 41 nationalities represented at our school. My students represent a broad spectrum of children from around the world. They bring individuality and creativity from France, Germany, The Netherlands, Spain, Israel, India, China, Japan, Vietnam, Italy and many other countries around the globe to share in my art classes. Hands of the Rainforest: The Embera People of Panama a book in my list can culturally transport students into a new world awareness. When we read and become one with the book we build knowledge that enables us to celebrate all cultures. My desire is to continue to enhance the learning environment by increasing multicultural awareness.
When I think of America as a "melting pot", I think of the amazing group of bright-eyed friends ready to set the world on fire with their artwork!
I love the way we can celebrate each student's individuality, work collaboratively, and ignite every student's unique, artistic voice in the world. Celebrating diversity brings a safe, peaceful school climate. Students are free to let their creative juices flow! "Every child is an artist" and I want to set the stage to engage and encourage every learner to cultivate a growth mindset.
An art classroom is a powerful place for children to connect with their creativity. Providing students with quality literature in art class can make a transcendental impact on student reading. We all know that many students that might excel in the art may not have the same success in reading or other subject areas. Flooding the art room with excellent texts that connect to art lessons, standards, other core curriculum subject areas as well as STEAM-related topics will provide an opportunity for all students to find an area they are eager to dive into reading! The South Carolina Read to Succeed Initiative has put much effort and financial resources into making reading a priority in all subject areas. Providing more opportunities for students to read and make connections through directed reading thinking activities in the art classroom is what research has specifically prescribed for the children in our technologically advanced world today.
My art literacy plan includes book choices that will spark student inquiry, ignite the imagination, build cultural awareness and increase empathy through carefully planned art lessons that pair common core standards with rich texts.
Students will have an opportunity to check these books out to take home for a few nights. Putting books in the hands of students as often as possible is optimum for increasing reading proficiency and building awareness.
The second component of my plan would include student volunteers sharing some of their book choices with shut-ins at local nursing homes. Making generational connections and sharing bright times in the lives of shut-ins is a win-win for both students and the aging generation. Making time for students to share their love of books and reading will also teach students the value of volunteering and living beyond themselves.
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