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unusually large class size for elementary art

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  • m.barnes40
    Hello fellow art educators, I have a friend teaching art in a typical elementary setting that is growing rapidly. The schools in this district keep hiring
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 29, 2007
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      Hello fellow art educators,
      I have a friend teaching art in a typical elementary setting that is
      growing rapidly. The schools in this district keep hiring more and
      more classroom teachers without adding additional "Specials" teachers.
      The solution was to combine classes for "Specials". Hence, the art
      teachers in this district are teaching 35-40 students at one time.
      Although this is OK with most music classes, we all know this could
      become hazardous and dangerous in a typical art room with paper
      cutters, kilns and other expensive and potentally dangerous supplies.
      My question is, are there any other art teachers out there faced with
      similar circumstances and if so, how do you manage. Does anyone know
      of any research articles about the impact on students concerning large
      class sizes?
      thanks,
      M.Barnes40
    • Julie Casebourn
      When I student taught, I had between 40 and 55 kids in each class of elementary art. The administration combined 3 classes together, one planning period/lunch
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 29, 2007
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        When I student taught, I had between 40 and 55 kids in each class of elementary art.  The administration combined 3 classes together, one planning period/lunch break for 60 minutes.  After my student teaching experience, the school hired me as an aide for the art teacher.  Even with me in there to help her for the remainder of the school year (about 2 months), it was not a very productive environment.  The key to keeping order was preparing everything to the "inth" degree before the classes came in the afternoon, very structured lessons, seating charts, a very consistent discipline plan with zero tolerance for anything disruptive.  The art teacher was an amazing woman that maintained this potentially crazy environment very well, and still managed to foster creativity here and there, but it was a ridiculous situation.  She did not stay long at this school as it completly drained her of energy after a few years of no relief.  I feel for your friend.
           

        "m.barnes40" <m.barnes40@...> wrote:
        Hello fellow art educators,
        I have a friend teaching art in a typical elementary setting that is
        growing rapidly. The schools in this district keep hiring more and
        more classroom teachers without adding additional "Specials" teachers.
        The solution was to combine classes for "Specials". Hence, the art
        teachers in this district are teaching 35-40 students at one time.
        Although this is OK with most music classes, we all know this could
        become hazardous and dangerous in a typical art room with paper
        cutters, kilns and other expensive and potentally dangerous supplies.
        My question is, are there any other art teachers out there faced with
        similar circumstances and if so, how do you manage. Does anyone know
        of any research articles about the impact on students concerning large
        class sizes?
        thanks,
        M.Barnes40



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      • Jeff Pridie
        M. Barnes, 35-40 Elementary students in an artroom shows that the school does not understand what is going on in an Art Room and that they do not value the
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 29, 2007
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          M. Barnes,

          35-40 Elementary students in an artroom shows that the
          school does not understand what is going on in an Art
          Room and that they do not value the educational
          benefits of the curriculum. You mentioned important
          issues concerning safety but there is also satisfying
          all the educational needs of students: learning
          disability students, students with handicaps etc. The
          teachers union, art association, parent groups should
          be sounding an alarm to this unsound numbers in a
          classroom. Would they expect that many students in
          the regular classroom and if they do then they are not
          advocates of learning. The quality of art produced
          and what is learned will suffer.

          Jeff (Minnesota)
          --- "m.barnes40" <m.barnes40@...> wrote:

          > Hello fellow art educators,
          > I have a friend teaching art in a typical elementary
          > setting that is
          > growing rapidly. The schools in this district keep
          > hiring more and
          > more classroom teachers without adding additional
          > "Specials" teachers.
          > The solution was to combine classes for "Specials".
          > Hence, the art
          > teachers in this district are teaching 35-40
          > students at one time.
          > Although this is OK with most music classes, we all
          > know this could
          > become hazardous and dangerous in a typical art room
          > with paper
          > cutters, kilns and other expensive and potentally
          > dangerous supplies.
          > My question is, are there any other art teachers out
          > there faced with
          > similar circumstances and if so, how do you manage.
          > Does anyone know
          > of any research articles about the impact on
          > students concerning large
          > class sizes?
          > thanks,
          > M.Barnes40
          >
          >



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        • Jeff Pridie
          M. Barnes, 35-40 Elementary students in an artroom shows that the school does not understand what is going on in an Art Room and that they do not value the
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 29, 2007
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            M. Barnes,

            35-40 Elementary students in an artroom shows that the
            school does not understand what is going on in an Art
            Room and that they do not value the educational
            benefits of the curriculum. You mentioned important
            issues concerning safety but there is also satisfying
            all the educational needs of students: learning
            disability students, students with handicaps etc. The
            teachers union, art association, parent groups should
            be sounding an alarm to this unsound numbers in a
            classroom. Would they expect that many students in
            the regular classroom and if they do then they are not
            advocates of learning. The quality of art produced
            and what is learned will suffer.

            Jeff (Minnesota)
            --- "m.barnes40" <m.barnes40@...> wrote:

            > Hello fellow art educators,
            > I have a friend teaching art in a typical elementary
            > setting that is
            > growing rapidly. The schools in this district keep
            > hiring more and
            > more classroom teachers without adding additional
            > "Specials" teachers.
            > The solution was to combine classes for "Specials".
            > Hence, the art
            > teachers in this district are teaching 35-40
            > students at one time.
            > Although this is OK with most music classes, we all
            > know this could
            > become hazardous and dangerous in a typical art room
            > with paper
            > cutters, kilns and other expensive and potentally
            > dangerous supplies.
            > My question is, are there any other art teachers out
            > there faced with
            > similar circumstances and if so, how do you manage.
            > Does anyone know
            > of any research articles about the impact on
            > students concerning large
            > class sizes?
            > thanks,
            > M.Barnes40
            >
            >




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          • Brandy
            I do not have to deal with this many students, but I send a letter home on the first day of class, usually through email, as that is my favorite way to
            Message 5 of 6 , Sep 30, 2007
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              I do not have to deal with this many students, but I send a letter
              home on the first day of class, usually through email, as that is my
              favorite way to communicate en mass, that lets the parents know that
              if we are to expand past crayons and watercolors, I need help. "I
              can't do the incredible cool and engaging projects that I would like
              to do without help and any classes that don't have extra assistants
              will have to do alternative projects to the ones planned so that the
              class is safe." I have the year planned out by August so I let them
              know the days I absolutely have to have help in. I put the
              non-essential days at the end of the list, and let them know not to
              fill up those days until I have all my days on the top filled. The
              responses trickle in, and I can say I almost always get the help I
              need by being very clear, very loud and very persistent about the help
              I want and need. Those PTA meetings have to come in handy for
              something.
              I hope she is able to get the help she deserves.
              Regards,
              Brandy


              > > Hence, the art
              > > teachers in this district are teaching 35-40
              > > students at one time.
            • aliteachesart
              Has your friend asked for the help of teacher s aides or a full time art assistant? I would invite the principle to come in and help out sometime, then art
              Message 6 of 6 , Oct 1, 2007
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                Has your friend asked for the help of teacher's aides or a full time art assistant? I would
                invite the principle to come in and help out sometime, then art might become a duty.
                Parents might like to come help out too. Student centered art experiences and centers
                could be another solution. Ali B.
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