The Studio Art Lesson Model


This diagram describes a general studio lesson progression that begins by setting clear expectations, then quickly evolves from teacher-centric events (demonstration) to student-centric activity (exploration and experimentation, collaboration and sharing of findings, research, application of ideas). In this model, the art teacher is a learning facilitator rather than the “sage on the stage.” Also identified are approximations of time (based upon a 90 minute block schedule); these provide some context for the proportion of teacher-led to student-centered activity. Note further, that opportunities for Quadrant A, B, C, and D learning moments are identified.

It is important to point out that this is not – cannot! – be seen as a one-size-fits-all template for instruction. This is a model intended to inform general studio teaching. The successful art teacher will recognize immediately that every class, every student, every situation requires a degree of flexibility to acknowledge the variety of ways that learners come to us. Critiques, visual research, process-driven lessons, etc. all demand a modified approach. To provide some contrast, the elementary art classroom more frequently relies upon a series of short (two or three minute) procedural lessons strung together from start to finish: time for studio will be proportionally shorter due to the nature of elementary teaching of art and the fact that these classes may only meet for fifty minutes at a time.

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© 2013, Mark Alan Anderson

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