Is Virtually Possible_ by nyut545e2


									                                                                       Te c h n o l o g y

                                                Teaching Art Online
                                                Is Virtually Possible!                                         Polly Werner

                                                       have	students	who	           ent	and	to	each	student	monthly,	
                                                        travel	over	the	world	      which	develops	a	relationship	with	

                                                       since	their	parents’	        my	students	that	allows	my	virtual	
              y	name	tag	stirred	con-     professions	require	travel	as	circus	     world	to	feel	more	traditional.	
              versation	at	the	state	     and	celebrity	entertainers	and	sport	     	 Occasionally,	I	invite	students	to	
              art	education	confer-       stars.	Ninety-nine	percent	of	my	         participate	in	non-required	activi-
              ence.	My	school	loca-       students	weren’t	utilizing	tradi-         ties	using	a	virtual	chalkboard	to	
tion	read	“Florida	Virtual	School”	       tional	art	programs.	In	effect,	I’m	      teach	drawing	lessons,	and	usually	
and,	as	people	read	my	name	tag,	         reaching	“the	rest”	of	the	students.	     this	class	is	filled.	We	conference	
they	asked,	“How	do	you	teach	art	        In	this	way,	virtual	learning	has	        call	and	take	turns	drawing,	which	
online?”	I’m	pleased	to	answer	that	      opened	the	doors	for	more	students	       allows	interaction	among	students,	
question	in	this	article.                 to	learn	about	art!	                      laughter,	talking,	and	a	shared	learn-
                                                                                    ing	experience	just	as	meaningful	
Teaching	Art	Online	101                   How	Do	I	Teach	Art	Online?                as	in	the	traditional	classroom.	I	
I	learned	about	Florida	Virtual	          With	computers	and	the	Internet,	         post	notices	on	my	course	Web	site	
School	at	a	technology	conference.	       students	have	access	to	the	course	       of	other	art	shows	and	contests	and	
It	sounded	too	good	to	be	true.	          any	time	of	day,	so	they	create	their	    have	shown	my	students’	art	in	a	
Teaching	from	home	in	my	paja-            own	schedules,	allowing	them	to	          virtual	gallery	on	my	Web	site.
mas?	No	way!	After	learning	that	         choose	the	times	they	can	be	most	
it	was	for	a	free	public	middle	and	      productive.	They	read	the	lesson	      How	Can	You	Teach	Online?
high	school,	I	made	several	contacts	     (including	Internet	examples	and	      Many	states	are	including	virtual	
and	was	eventually	contracted	to	         links	to	Web	sites	for	further	knowl- learning	as	part	of	their	educational	
write	the	middle	school	art	course,	      edge)	then	complete	a	short	skill-     systems.	Art	is	a	unique	subject	to	
which	was	similar	to	planning	a	          building	activity	                                          include	in	an	
year	at	the	traditional	school	where	     in	a	sketchbook,	     My students are a mixture online	school	
I	was	teaching.	                          which	I	check	       of home-schooled children, curriculum.	
	 I	used	state	and	national	art	stan-     for	understand-                                             Increasing	
dards	to	determine	the	art	skills	that	   ing.	Finally,	they	
                                                                rural students without art demands	on	
would	be	taught,	and	my	knowledge	        produce	a	work	     in their school, and students traditional	
of	middle	school	students	to	incor-       of	art	show-           with medical conditions.             school	budgets	
porate	age-appropriate	and	relevant	      ing	acquisition	                                            have	eliminated	
content	that	would	be	educational	        of	the	new	skill	in	a	creative	and	    non-core	curriculum	such	as	art,	
and	enjoyable.	The	course	includes	       meaningful	way.	For	me	to	“see”	       and	online	classes	are	an	excellent	
skill-building	lessons,	sketchbook	       their	work,	they	scan,	and	mail	or	e- option	for	students	and	parents	who	
activities,	interactive	Internet	chal-    mail	a	photograph	of	their	art.	They	 want	more	educational	opportuni-
lenges,	group	discussions,	and	cul-       practice	multiple	technical	skills	    ties.	This	is	a	fantastic	way	to	work	
minating	projects	to	give	students	       when	submitting	work,	requiring	       if	you	are	self-motivated.	Use	the	
opportunities	to	demonstrate	evi-         me	to	be	a	technology	teacher,	too!	   Internet	and	search	the	opportuni-
dence	of	their	acquired	knowledge.	       Using	a	rubric	to	grade,	I	provide	    ties	that	are	available.	Maybe	you’ll	
Finally,	I	was	interviewed	and	hired	     appropriate	feedback.	                 be	the	next	online	art	teacher!	
to	teach	the	course.	
                                          A	Second	Chance	to	Learn                  Polly Werner teaches art at the Florida
Who	Are	My	Students?                      One	benefit	of	online	teaching	is	        Virtual School.
My	students	are	a	mixture	of	home-        that	students	have	multiple	chances	                    Web     Link
schooled	children,	rural	students	        to	submit	their	work.	If	they	don’t	
                                                                                    Florida Virtual School, an accred-
without	art	in	their	traditional	         demonstrate	the	skill	on	the	first	
                                                                                    ited, public, online virtual school in
school,	and	students	with	medical	        try,	they	can	try	again.	I’m	available	
                                                                                    the state of Florida serving students
conditions	preventing	them	from	          to	the	students	by	e-mail,	phone,	or	
                                                                                    in grades 6–12.
attending	traditional	schools.	I	even	    instant	messaging.	I	speak	to	a	par-

WEB	 SchoolArts	   March		2007

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