Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
medoll

High School Ceramic Teacher

Recommended Posts

Pres    896

Re class size.

I was at an art opening last night for student art projects called "quantum". A guy came up to me and said;"Are you an art teacher?" I introduced my self and said where I taught. He teaches art in another school division. I knew his school has the largest population of students in the city @ 1800. We have 1340 at my school and we have two full time art teachers, and couild probably use at least another half time person. He said that he is the only art teacher there! I know that back in the day they had 3 full time art teachers! He was shocked,when I told him this. He said he teaches 150 students in seven classes. We cover 14 classes with the two of us.at our school. This means that at his school 1650 students are NOT getting an opportunity to take art. Yes, it is not a compulsory course, but you would think that there would be room for at lest one more art person.

TJR.

 

 

Yes, this sort of thing is happening at a lot of schools. It brings to mind the chicken or the egg. Do you go out and try to drum more students into the program by being proactive, and thus hoping to get more staff to handle students, or do you hide your head in the sand to handle the students you have the best you can. If the schools are holding the budget to a minimum by not adding staff, increasing your class sizes results in less of a quality education for those you have. Big problem for arts educators.

 

 

Pres;

Of course you know that I do the former. When I started at my current school nine years ago, the position was 1.5. Then I built it up to 1.7, and now it is at 2.0, and has been for quite a long time. I think think putting your head in the sand helps anyone. Like you, I want to retire in a blaze of glory, with my head held high, and have no regrets.I did feel a bit powerless to help this guy.

TJR.

 

 

No blaze of glory on my part, I went out regretfully, and missed it so much the first few years-I was just having so much damn fun! My Mom had died(long slow death,7yrs), and I figured Dad would need more company at 83. So I retired, Eight months later he remarried! Go figure! She was 66 and a nurse! Now I don't worry about him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Benzine    610

So this topic has risen again. Glad to see it, as I find it quite informative, and just all around fun.

 

 

I still can't wrap my head around teaching that many students in a ceramics class. Twenty seven students, was my max in my eight years of teaching, and luckily, it was full of really good students. In contrast, I had a class, with about ten less students, but there were several idiots, who made the class unpleasant. It was not a good combination of students. The majority were good, and I felt sorry that they had to be in the same class, as the few idiots. And the sad thing is, there wasn't much I could do. Separating them did no good, punishment from myself, or the administration, also didn't help. Even talking to parents didn't fix the problem. It's one of those classes, where you are glad to see it end. The funny thing is, one of the more vocal of that bunch, was set to take another class with me later in the year, he dropped it. Without his "buddies" he was nothing. I wish guidance had a filter on their scheduling program, that would keep certain students out of the same class. It would allow the teacher to actually, teach, instead of focusing on the same problem students everyday.

 

Now, a little bit more positive discussion. Pres, or anyone else, who would like to offer input, I am curious as to how you allotted wheel time to students, and to what you required of them on the wheel?

I've been more or less following the same set up/ requirements, I've been using since I started teaching. Here's what I have done:

 

My first teaching job, was on a block schedule (ninety minute classes, nine week long terms). Once we got rolling on the first couple hand built projects, I'd take four students at a time (we had four wheels) and they'd be required to work on the potter's wheel for half a class period, each day for a week. They were also required to make at least one project, that met my approval. If they made more than one, I graded their best. After a week was up, a new group would be on the wheel, and this went until towards the end of the term, when we were done with wet clay work. This set up, allowed me to introduce them to the wheel. I had a Ceramics II class, where they would have to make a matching set on the wheel.

 

In my second teaching job, I was on an eight period a day schedule. I kept the same basic set up, but since the class lasted a semester, I didn't assign students to the wheel, on a weekly schedule. They were just required to create a couple projects, that met my approval. I did require them to trim a foot, whereas I didn't at my first school. The reason? Time and the inclusion of a Griffin Grip at my second school. That just makes, teaching how to trim a bottom, much easier. I still show other techniques, but only required them to use the Grip. I had no Ceramics II class at that school, so I had to fit in as much as I could.

 

Now, I'm in my third job, which also runs on the block, Thank God! However, there actually was no focused Ceramics class, when I got here. I do believe there used to be, but that's when the department was larger. It used to be a two, or at least one and a half position program, but was dropped to one several years ago. So, when I got here, it was just a Three-Dimensional Art class. Some clay work was taught in it, but the rest of it was basic work with other materials, matte board, wire, and things, that bordered on "Crafty". So I said, "Enough of that" and made the class predominately clay work. We do some plaster work, after we are done with wet clay, but that's about it.

So, as with my first school, each student is on the wheel for about a week. We have five working wheels, with a sixth, that I am getting rid of. It's pretty beat, and takes up too much space. Right now, they only have to make one project, though the majority love, the variety of objects, throwing offers, and make more. Despite that, I'm thinking about changing my set up a bit.

I'm thinking about requiring three projects. The first, they are allowed a decent amount of help from me. For the other two, they are not. At least one must have a pulled handle, and at least one must have a trimmed foot (I'm looking into purchasing a Griffin Grip). Sadly, I do not have a second level, or advanced class for clay work. So much like my second school, I have to fit everything in.

I looked into creating a new pottery class, but there's no room in the schedule, and severe lack in the amount of me. So, that's not going to happen.

 

So what does everyone think? Any suggestions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TJR    359

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Benzine    610

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Benzine    610

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Natania    6

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

 

 

I was moved into the basement from upstairs in my regular room-they needed the space for Social Studies classes! I had a room that was about 15 by 20. Used 8ft melamine top cafeteria tables, kiln in same room with 2 wheels. No elbow room! I had a door in the back of the room that had a small hole in it. I kept seeing this large room cluttered with all sorts of janitorial stuff and other supplies. I lusted after that room! So I started building frame work to get it. "It really is difficult to store projects that are larger, and have everyone rolling out slabs on the tables do you mind if I let them do it on the floor in the hall?" "Do I have to take 25 students this semester< you've seen how crowded the room is?" "Is there another space in the building that would allow for the larger class?" Mind you this did not happen in a day, but in 3 years I had that room! This and the room I was presently in. The new space was 15 by 40 Room for the new Walker pug mill, a wedging table 6 work benches, lots of storage racks for projects, potters wheels in old room grew to 6. Maybe your building has a space. . . .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Natania    6

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

 

 

I was moved into the basement from upstairs in my regular room-they needed the space for Social Studies classes! I had a room that was about 15 by 20. Used 8ft melamine top cafeteria tables, kiln in same room with 2 wheels. No elbow room! I had a door in the back of the room that had a small hole in it. I kept seeing this large room cluttered with all sorts of janitorial stuff and other supplies. I lusted after that room! So I started building frame work to get it. "It really is difficult to store projects that are larger, and have everyone rolling out slabs on the tables do you mind if I let them do it on the floor in the hall?" "Do I have to take 25 students this semester< you've seen how crowded the room is?" "Is there another space in the building that would allow for the larger class?" Mind you this did not happen in a day, but in 3 years I had that room! This and the room I was presently in. The new space was 15 by 40 Room for the new Walker pug mill, a wedging table 6 work benches, lots of storage racks for projects, potters wheels in old room grew to 6. Maybe your building has a space. . . .

 

 

Yes. I lust after a mostly unused office accross the hall which would be perfect to at least put the kiln (has a wall to the outside for the vent) so that it isn't in the classroom, and perhaps a wheel or two. But I've asked for it and been refused. The office is only used to distribute yearbooks at the end of the year, grr! Ceramics is a popular class, and I'v reiterated that I could take more students if I had bigger space, but to no avail. I think the problem might be administrative, and space is quite tight at this school so if there is extra it is likely to go to an academic need...however we are embarking on a new strategic plan, so perhaps someday in the far off) future....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

 

 

I was moved into the basement from upstairs in my regular room-they needed the space for Social Studies classes! I had a room that was about 15 by 20. Used 8ft melamine top cafeteria tables, kiln in same room with 2 wheels. No elbow room! I had a door in the back of the room that had a small hole in it. I kept seeing this large room cluttered with all sorts of janitorial stuff and other supplies. I lusted after that room! So I started building frame work to get it. "It really is difficult to store projects that are larger, and have everyone rolling out slabs on the tables do you mind if I let them do it on the floor in the hall?" "Do I have to take 25 students this semester< you've seen how crowded the room is?" "Is there another space in the building that would allow for the larger class?" Mind you this did not happen in a day, but in 3 years I had that room! This and the room I was presently in. The new space was 15 by 40 Room for the new Walker pug mill, a wedging table 6 work benches, lots of storage racks for projects, potters wheels in old room grew to 6. Maybe your building has a space. . . .

 

 

Yes. I lust after a mostly unused office accross the hall which would be perfect to at least put the kiln (has a wall to the outside for the vent) so that it isn't in the classroom, and perhaps a wheel or two. But I've asked for it and been refused. The office is only used to distribute yearbooks at the end of the year, grr! Ceramics is a popular class, and I'v reiterated that I could take more students if I had bigger space, but to no avail. I think the problem might be administrative, and space is quite tight at this school so if there is extra it is likely to go to an academic need...however we are embarking on a new strategic plan, so perhaps someday in the far off) future....

 

 

So the nest obvious question is-how is the kiln vented today? Is it? Do you have to fire an unvented kiln in a room with students? Is the kiln sufficiently separated from the student work areas to prevent accidental student accidents, is it separated from the wall by at least 1 foot of open space? Do you dare present this problem or do you fear the administration cutting the course completely. These are the things we deal with day to day in the public schools, and the compromises we make. Interesting problems

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TJR    359

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

 

 

I was moved into the basement from upstairs in my regular room-they needed the space for Social Studies classes! I had a room that was about 15 by 20. Used 8ft melamine top cafeteria tables, kiln in same room with 2 wheels. No elbow room! I had a door in the back of the room that had a small hole in it. I kept seeing this large room cluttered with all sorts of janitorial stuff and other supplies. I lusted after that room! So I started building frame work to get it. "It really is difficult to store projects that are larger, and have everyone rolling out slabs on the tables do you mind if I let them do it on the floor in the hall?" "Do I have to take 25 students this semester< you've seen how crowded the room is?" "Is there another space in the building that would allow for the larger class?" Mind you this did not happen in a day, but in 3 years I had that room! This and the room I was presently in. The new space was 15 by 40 Room for the new Walker pug mill, a wedging table 6 work benches, lots of storage racks for projects, potters wheels in old room grew to 6. Maybe your building has a space. . . .

 

 

Yes. I lust after a mostly unused office accross the hall which would be perfect to at least put the kiln (has a wall to the outside for the vent) so that it isn't in the classroom, and perhaps a wheel or two. But I've asked for it and been refused. The office is only used to distribute yearbooks at the end of the year, grr! Ceramics is a popular class, and I'v reiterated that I could take more students if I had bigger space, but to no avail. I think the problem might be administrative, and space is quite tight at this school so if there is extra it is likely to go to an academic need...however we are embarking on a new strategic plan, so perhaps someday in the far off) future....

 

 

Pres, Benzine,et al;

If you guys saw my art room, you would laugh![or cry!]. My room is the old staff room on the second floor. It had two single bath rooms in it. The toilets were removed. The previous art teacher used one bathroom as her office. The other one we use as a kiln room. It has a huge Cone Art kiln in there. Vented, and the door is closed when firing. The room I first had when I arrived there nine years ago was a former Social Studies classroom. The windows looked out on a brickwall! Anyway, both rooms connected with a door and we shared one laundry tub between 50 students and hour.

The previous art teacher had a massive heart attack in June [on a Saturday], and I inherited the room. I moved her office out and now have a locked supply room and a kiln room.

A large classroom became available at the end of the hall, so the other art teacher has that. I wanted to stay near the kiln and supplies. I am a bit of a pack rat, so it gets crowded in there.One thing I did do which was smart was to order new furniture for both rooms. All tables are countertop height at 40 inches. Saves my back. We have backless stools for everyone. No slouching! My previous school, I had a HUGE room with south facing windows on the main floor, but that was elementary. My current room is on the second floor. No elevator. It's been nine years now.

Tom Roberts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

 

 

I was moved into the basement from upstairs in my regular room-they needed the space for Social Studies classes! I had a room that was about 15 by 20. Used 8ft melamine top cafeteria tables, kiln in same room with 2 wheels. No elbow room! I had a door in the back of the room that had a small hole in it. I kept seeing this large room cluttered with all sorts of janitorial stuff and other supplies. I lusted after that room! So I started building frame work to get it. "It really is difficult to store projects that are larger, and have everyone rolling out slabs on the tables do you mind if I let them do it on the floor in the hall?" "Do I have to take 25 students this semester< you've seen how crowded the room is?" "Is there another space in the building that would allow for the larger class?" Mind you this did not happen in a day, but in 3 years I had that room! This and the room I was presently in. The new space was 15 by 40 Room for the new Walker pug mill, a wedging table 6 work benches, lots of storage racks for projects, potters wheels in old room grew to 6. Maybe your building has a space. . . .

 

 

Yes. I lust after a mostly unused office accross the hall which would be perfect to at least put the kiln (has a wall to the outside for the vent) so that it isn't in the classroom, and perhaps a wheel or two. But I've asked for it and been refused. The office is only used to distribute yearbooks at the end of the year, grr! Ceramics is a popular class, and I'v reiterated that I could take more students if I had bigger space, but to no avail. I think the problem might be administrative, and space is quite tight at this school so if there is extra it is likely to go to an academic need...however we are embarking on a new strategic plan, so perhaps someday in the far off) future....

 

 

Pres, Benzine,et al;

If you guys saw my art room, you would laugh![or cry!]. My room is the old staff room on the second floor. It had two single bath rooms in it. The toilets were removed. The previous art teacher used one bathroom as her office. The other one we use as a kiln room. It has a huge Cone Art kiln in there. Vented, and the door is closed when firing. The room I first had when I arrived there nine years ago was a former Social Studies classroom. The windows looked out on a brickwall! Anyway, both rooms connected with a door and we shared one laundry tub between 50 students and hour.

The previous art teacher had a massive heart attack in June [on a Saturday], and I inherited the room. I moved her office out and now have a locked supply room and a kiln room.

A large classroom became available at the end of the hall, so the other art teacher has that. I wanted to stay near the kiln and supplies. I am a bit of a pack rat, so it gets crowded in there.One thing I did do which was smart was to order new furniture for both rooms. All tables are countertop height at 40 inches. Saves my back. We have backless stools for everyone. No slouching! My previous school, I had a HUGE room with south facing windows on the main floor, but that was elementary. My current room is on the second floor. No elevator. It's been nine years now.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Windows! What the &(^)*&^ are those! Neither of my 3 basement rooms had rooms, had lots of space, but no windows. The place was like a cave. It got even worse later in the 2000 when the district decided they could save money by having every other light on in the entire building. Little did they know I had a light key. The cellar dwellars rose up in revolt in mid winter to protest any halls without windows having too little light. We won. All in all, everyone's situation comes with ups and downs and . . . .compromises. We learn to work with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Natania    6

Benzine;

Sounds like you have been doing it for a while. I am in my 27 year of high school art teaching.Actually, I taught elementary art for four years, but went back to high school. Those elementary teachers teach right until June 30! I'm in Canada, remember?

My question to you;"Are your classes multi-graded? If they were separated by grade, as in gr.9,then10,then11,etc., then you could build on proficiency.I have separate grades-two semesters. I have those students for 75 minutes a day. I have one Brent wheel, so don't spend too much time on throwing. We do a six week clay unit, as well as all the other media, like painting and design and drawing. I do five units a semester.

As for those bad kids, everyone gets them. You try to be tough and make the students understand that you have a serious course. I have thrown a lot of students out, after giving the written assignment, going to admin, calling the parents. I hate calling parents.

Because I have separate grades, as you get into the higher grades, you have less difficulties. Grade nine is usually the toughest grade, but most of the time they settle into it.

Did I mention that I was voted the Canadian High School Art Educator of the year for 2012? Been doing it a long time.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Elementary Art.....I love the kids, hate the projects. The concepts and techniques are too basic. I realize you have to teach the basics/ foundations, but that aint for me. Also, from my experience, elementary art classes exist to make holiday decorations for parents and props for school plays.

 

My classes are indeed multi-grade, 9-12. It is one of the two classes in the Art Department, with no prerequisite. So all of them, unless they have experience elsewhere, are at the same level, in terms of clay work, namely the potter's wheel.

 

Congratulations on the honor.

 

 

You asked about how I allotted time for wheel throwing? Tough one. I didn't , at least not in the Ceramics one classes. After teaching Ceramics 1 for several years, and having many students take it a second time to get more experience where they would work on the wheel-Ceramics 2 happened. It came about as an argument with audits, class requirements, and student needs. In the end I held them over a barrel with the fact that they had in the past allowed several students over several years to take an unscheduled, unnamed, Ceramics course-not a good thing to be on the audit. So I got a Ceramics 2 class, they got me to teach it at the same time as Ceramics 1. Class sizes were limited to 20 in the end, no matter what the mix. Ceramics 2 was held to 5 as I only had six wheels. You know, it worked out well. I would do demonstrations for the 1's, move into the wheel room and check on progress, make suggestions and adjustments to posture, hand position, grip etc. Then go back to the 1's, back and forth the entire period-50 minutes-5 days a week. I don't believe you can teach anyone the wheel, they have to learn it-like riding a bike. I started them with 9 inch cylinders with 3lb. Once completed-usually by 1st MP. Then had them choose an object they were interested in making. I did demonstration on the form, and had them research variations and present sketches to me. Then they were required to create 3 in series. They also had to create a slab and wheel thrown combination pot, and their final benchmark was a teapot form. We had done mugs, and lids as sides and the final demo was a series of pouring spouts. Kept them busy, kept me running, but I loved it.

 

 

Classes, that don't exist? I can't imagine doing something like that.....hehe.... I do "Independent Study" courses, for any subject I teach. The administration hasn't said anything about it yet.

I wished I had a higher level ceramics class I could teach, so I could have the students focus on the wheel, but alas, I don't see that happening. So my best solution, seems to be, cramming in as much as possible. Sadly this means, that I am somewhat tied, to basic forms. I do show examples of more complex, and multi-piece vessels, and I have had students make an attempt at those. I also have students sketch out ideas for their wheel projects, before they start on the wheel. I tell them, that I can't help on the wheel, until I know what they are going form.

 

I do definitely agree with you, that you can't teach the wheel. I tell the students that, when I'm doing my demo, especially with centering and pulling the clay. It's just something you have to get a feel for, and you can't teach that.

 

 

Yes "independent Study" covered a lot of good and ills. Our district was going for certification of some sort and had auditors in for nearly everything from class sizes, to budget, to grounds. If it could be quantified, they did it. It did get me the 2nd level class as I said, it also got me a second level of my animation classe. This day and age of budgetary constraints and lack of support when it comes to increases, can be beaten if you strike when the opportunity arises. The adult class helped as the director for Federal Programs was in the class many years, often unallocated money would find its way for equipment. I also had the head of personnel in the class many years. Think these things don't help-think again!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also have my share of independent study students, but really only the one ceramics class. The problem is space, and the studio is tiny. Thus I only have three wheels. I simply require all students to make "something" on the wheel, so even the ones who don't like to get messy will try it. I give regular demos for inspiration (I hope). If I could get a bigger classroom I'd like to get more wheels, and perhaps try a ceramics 2 class, even if it had to be at the same time as 1. Thanks for the posts. They are helpful, as an art teacher's' dilemma often involves getting the most result from the least resources...

 

 

I was moved into the basement from upstairs in my regular room-they needed the space for Social Studies classes! I had a room that was about 15 by 20. Used 8ft melamine top cafeteria tables, kiln in same room with 2 wheels. No elbow room! I had a door in the back of the room that had a small hole in it. I kept seeing this large room cluttered with all sorts of janitorial stuff and other supplies. I lusted after that room! So I started building frame work to get it. "It really is difficult to store projects that are larger, and have everyone rolling out slabs on the tables do you mind if I let them do it on the floor in the hall?" "Do I have to take 25 students this semester< you've seen how crowded the room is?" "Is there another space in the building that would allow for the larger class?" Mind you this did not happen in a day, but in 3 years I had that room! This and the room I was presently in. The new space was 15 by 40 Room for the new Walker pug mill, a wedging table 6 work benches, lots of storage racks for projects, potters wheels in old room grew to 6. Maybe your building has a space. . . .

 

 

Yes. I lust after a mostly unused office accross the hall which would be perfect to at least put the kiln (has a wall to the outside for the vent) so that it isn't in the classroom, and perhaps a wheel or two. But I've asked for it and been refused. The office is only used to distribute yearbooks at the end of the year, grr! Ceramics is a popular class, and I'v reiterated that I could take more students if I had bigger space, but to no avail. I think the problem might be administrative, and space is quite tight at this school so if there is extra it is likely to go to an academic need...however we are embarking on a new strategic plan, so perhaps someday in the far off) future....

 

 

Pres, Benzine,et al;

If you guys saw my art room, you would laugh![or cry!]. My room is the old staff room on the second floor. It had two single bath rooms in it. The toilets were removed. The previous art teacher used one bathroom as her office. The other one we use as a kiln room. It has a huge Cone Art kiln in there. Vented, and the door is closed when firing. The room I first had when I arrived there nine years ago was a former Social Studies classroom. The windows looked out on a brickwall! Anyway, both rooms connected with a door and we shared one laundry tub between 50 students and hour.

The previous art teacher had a massive heart attack in June [on a Saturday], and I inherited the room. I moved her office out and now have a locked supply room and a kiln room.

A large classroom became available at the end of the hall, so the other art teacher has that. I wanted to stay near the kiln and supplies. I am a bit of a pack rat, so it gets crowded in there.One thing I did do which was smart was to order new furniture for both rooms. All tables are countertop height at 40 inches. Saves my back. We have backless stools for everyone. No slouching! My previous school, I had a HUGE room with south facing windows on the main floor, but that was elementary. My current room is on the second floor. No elevator. It's been nine years now.

Tom Roberts

 

 

Windows! What the &(^)*&^ are those! Neither of my 3 basement rooms had rooms, had lots of space, but no windows. The place was like a cave. It got even worse later in the 2000 when the district decided they could save money by having every other light on in the entire building. Little did they know I had a light key. The cellar dwellars rose up in revolt in mid winter to protest any halls without windows having too little light. We won. All in all, everyone's situation comes with ups and downs and . . . .compromises. We learn to work with it.

 

 

 

The kiln in my room is vented out the ceiling - the room is on the top floor of the building. I try to fire it on days we not have class, though, since it is still a bit fumey. i don't think I can use that argument as leverage since they went to quite a bit of trouble to vent the thing out the ceiling. I'd still like to use that office across the hall, though, , since even that little bit more space would really open ump more possibilities...on the upside there is one skylight in the slanted attic ceiling, so we get a tiny bit of natural light. However, the wheels are under the eves, so a tall student has to watch is/her head when getting up after throwing!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TJR    359

Hey, gang;

This is turning into a GREAT conversation! I spent my first 7 years teaching in a windowless art room in the basement. I took a one year unpaid leave to get out of there. Worked as a sub and also was an artist in residence at the Bray in Montana. The superintendent called me and offered me a job back at the same school-teaching commercial art. I asked her if there were any windows . She said "yes". The learning curve was steep, as it was a Mac lab, and I didn't even know how to turn on a computer! Lots of Saturdays spent taking Photoshop and Pagemaker. Did that for four years, and painted over 40 murals around the city. Too much technology, and too many computer upgrades, so I got out of it, and taught elementary art for another four. My room, probably the most beautiful art room in the city, was HUGE, on the main floor, with south facing windows. But it was a burnout job. Everyone expecting the art teacher to do, and this. It was fun, but I had to go back to high school, which is my first love.This is, I'm sure my lst job.

Tom Roberts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Hey, gang;

This is turning into a GREAT conversation! I spent my first 7 years teaching in a windowless art room in the basement. I took a one year unpaid leave to get out of there. Worked as a sub and also was an artist in residence at the Bray in Montana. The superintendent called me and offered me a job back at the same school-teaching commercial art. I asked her if there were any windows . She said "yes". The learning curve was steep, as it was a Mac lab, and I didn't even know how to turn on a computer! Lots of Saturdays spent taking Photoshop and Pagemaker. Did that for four years, and painted over 40 murals around the city. Too much technology, and too many computer upgrades, so I got out of it, and taught elementary art for another four. My room, probably the most beautiful art room in the city, was HUGE, on the main floor, with south facing windows. But it was a burnout job. Everyone expecting the art teacher to do, and this. It was fun, but I had to go back to high school, which is my first love.This is, I'm sure my lst job.

Tom Roberts.

 

 

When I left the district, I could have been paid the most of anyone under a principal if you went by real estate. I had two double rooms, that were mine. The first, the ceramics rooms. The second my Electronic Studio Arts studio where I taught 2D and 3D animation. Started that in the late 80's. I loved the ESA classes, and taught myself everything I could in the same manner as you Tom. The course started with Amiga's originally on a grant, then in 2000 we moved to win based machines. 2 classes a day, sometimes 3. Year long courses. Because I was the only one who knew anything about computers in the early years especially with drawing and 3-D, I got a lot of junk jobs also. Biggest one was the update of the blueprints used for the emergency plan. They had not been updated in 20 years! So after 9/11 the job fell to me. I measured rooms and spaces, scanned in the original plans and redid the entire 2 building complex!

 

I included a couple of pics taken during the adult classes. Studio 1 was taken from the first workbench, teachers desk and filing cabinets not shown. Studio 2 shows the wet cabinet, board rack, and the doorway into the other room with the window I had cut to monitor the activity. That room had 6 wheels, 2 kilns and two drying cabinets, glaze making equipment and materials and all of the glazes we had made up. It was used for glazing and throwing. Last but not least, my only sink-a laundry tub with a gleco trap.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TJR    359

Pres;

It looks great! Is that you in the black and white checked shirt? Obviously this is your Saturday program as it looks to me to be all adults. I taught Adult pottery at our city art gallery for eight years on Wednesday nights .I also taught two classes of youth pottery on Saturdays. Put myself through the after degree program for a B.Ed. After doing it for so long, and teaching full time art, I wasn't interested in teaching on Saturdays. I will see if I can dig up some pictures.

Tom.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Pres;

It looks great! Is that you in the black and white checked shirt? Obviously this is your Saturday program as it looks to me to be all adults. I taught Adult pottery at our city art gallery for eight years on Wednesday nights .I also taught two classes of youth pottery on Saturdays. Put myself through the after degree program for a B.Ed. After doing it for so long, and teaching full time art, I wasn't interested in teaching on Saturdays. I will see if I can dig up some pictures.

Tom.

 

 

Yeah, you picked me out. Those were some of the adults in the class getting ready to head home. I was showing the young woman how to pack a pot for take home-she won one of my door prizes. I would make one or two pots for door prizes during the class as a end thing. They loved it, but so many people didn't get one. Last year I taught two Saturday classes and made around 15 door prizes. I had a lot invested, and wanted to leave a little more of myself around. Funny, but many of the people worked in the district offices, many of them did not take the door prize home as they lived in the school more than at home. Like me. Attached is some of the door prizes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Benzine    610

Very nice set up Pres.

 

I too started teaching in a basement room, though, not for my ceramics classes. I taught the intro level class, and my Drawing classes there. It was in the basement of the original 1897 school. It had been many things over the years. I liked it, because it was separate from the main high school, so I didn't get bothered a lot. It was also fairly comfortable, due to the old school geothermal system (Being partially below ground). Luckily, I did have windows, and even a fire escape I opened on warm days. I called it the "Hobbit Door", because it definitely wasn't a full-sized escape.

I did Ceramics in the other art room, which had a pretty nice set up, with a wheel and shelving area, with a kiln room.

 

At my second school, the Art Room used to be an auto shop. It even still had the garage door and large floor grate. It was a nice versatile studio, but the heating and cooling in that thing were pretty bad.

 

My current room was fairly well designed, minus the electrical outlets, which are severely lacking. Sadly, the room lost about a third of its size, several years ago, which was before I came. The art staff used to be at least one and a half, with the half, teaching middle school as well. So one room was all high school, and the other part high school, part middle school. The room was then downsized, with the middle school, high school part becoming a Spanish room. It is now a Special Education classroom. You can still tell it used to be one room. There are connecting doors, and a two sided sink, that is now divided by a wall.

 

The worst thing is, the original sturdy art tables, were exiled by one of the past instructors. She thought they were too big for the room, and were moved to the new Spanish Room, which used to be the Art Room. They were then taken to where the Spanish Room is currently. So I'm left with some short, adjustable legged (See wobbly legged) tables. They don't work for drawing, because if one person is erasing, while someone is drawing, a fist fight almost breaks out. So if they aren't sturdy enough for trouble free erasing, you know you can't properly wedge on them. I tried to get the old ones back, but the current Spanish teacher, really likes them. I also talked to the Principal about getting new ones, but I'm on the bottom of a very long list, for such items. I even asked if my Art Club could fund raise for them. The answer was "No". I'm tempted to see how much it would be to build my own.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Very nice set up Pres.

 

I too started teaching in a basement room, though, not for my ceramics classes. I taught the intro level class, and my Drawing classes there. It was in the basement of the original 1897 school. It had been many things over the years. I liked it, because it was separate from the main high school, so I didn't get bothered a lot. It was also fairly comfortable, due to the old school geothermal system (Being partially below ground). Luckily, I did have windows, and even a fire escape I opened on warm days. I called it the "Hobbit Door", because it definitely wasn't a full-sized escape.

I did Ceramics in the other art room, which had a pretty nice set up, with a wheel and shelving area, with a kiln room.

 

At my second school, the Art Room used to be an auto shop. It even still had the garage door and large floor grate. It was a nice versatile studio, but the heating and cooling in that thing were pretty bad.

 

My current room was fairly well designed, minus the electrical outlets, which are severely lacking. Sadly, the room lost about a third of its size, several years ago, which was before I came. The art staff used to be at least one and a half, with the half, teaching middle school as well. So one room was all high school, and the other part high school, part middle school. The room was then downsized, with the middle school, high school part becoming a Spanish room. It is now a Special Education classroom. You can still tell it used to be one room. There are connecting doors, and a two sided sink, that is now divided by a wall.

 

The worst thing is, the original sturdy art tables, were exiled by one of the past instructors. She thought they were too big for the room, and were moved to the new Spanish Room, which used to be the Art Room. They were then taken to where the Spanish Room is currently. So I'm left with some short, adjustable legged (See wobbly legged) tables. They don't work for drawing, because if one person is erasing, while someone is drawing, a fist fight almost breaks out. So if they aren't sturdy enough for trouble free erasing, you know you can't properly wedge on them. I tried to get the old ones back, but the current Spanish teacher, really likes them. I also talked to the Principal about getting new ones, but I'm on the bottom of a very long list, for such items. I even asked if my Art Club could fund raise for them. The answer was "No". I'm tempted to see how much it would be to build my own.

 

 

As I taught Art 1 in the Ceramics room, I purchased 25 large clipped drawing boards. I built a rack for the wall where they hang next to the rolling pins. The drawing boards let the students work wherever they wanted, and they could hold the angle they liked or lay flat. The work bench tables were not smooth enough for drawing always getting the butcher block lines in a pencil drawing. I learned a lot of tricks with the space that worked out well for me, but it took time, and money. The adult classes supplied a lot of that money-the drawing boards came out of that budget. My deal with the district was that I would donate my time, and the money for adult tuition and lab fees would go into an account for school spending at my discretion. Also the account had to be one that would continue from year to year not getting dumped to general fund if not used at the end of the year. This was to cover any larger expenses I might incur as when I bought new wheels, new Bailey extruder, or any new workbenches or shelving. Imagine the feeling of power that gave a teacher when budget money was scarce.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TJR    359

Very nice set up Pres.

 

I too started teaching in a basement room, though, not for my ceramics classes. I taught the intro level class, and my Drawing classes there. It was in the basement of the original 1897 school. It had been many things over the years. I liked it, because it was separate from the main high school, so I didn't get bothered a lot. It was also fairly comfortable, due to the old school geothermal system (Being partially below ground). Luckily, I did have windows, and even a fire escape I opened on warm days. I called it the "Hobbit Door", because it definitely wasn't a full-sized escape.

I did Ceramics in the other art room, which had a pretty nice set up, with a wheel and shelving area, with a kiln room.

 

At my second school, the Art Room used to be an auto shop. It even still had the garage door and large floor grate. It was a nice versatile studio, but the heating and cooling in that thing were pretty bad.

 

My current room was fairly well designed, minus the electrical outlets, which are severely lacking. Sadly, the room lost about a third of its size, several years ago, which was before I came. The art staff used to be at least one and a half, with the half, teaching middle school as well. So one room was all high school, and the other part high school, part middle school. The room was then downsized, with the middle school, high school part becoming a Spanish room. It is now a Special Education classroom. You can still tell it used to be one room. There are connecting doors, and a two sided sink, that is now divided by a wall.

 

The worst thing is, the original sturdy art tables, were exiled by one of the past instructors. She thought they were too big for the room, and were moved to the new Spanish Room, which used to be the Art Room. They were then taken to where the Spanish Room is currently. So I'm left with some short, adjustable legged (See wobbly legged) tables. They don't work for drawing, because if one person is erasing, while someone is drawing, a fist fight almost breaks out. So if they aren't sturdy enough for trouble free erasing, you know you can't properly wedge on them. I tried to get the old ones back, but the current Spanish teacher, really likes them. I also talked to the Principal about getting new ones, but I'm on the bottom of a very long list, for such items. I even asked if my Art Club could fund raise for them. The answer was "No". I'm tempted to see how much it would be to build my own.

 

 

Benzine;

I feel your pain. We had a new principal come in and look at our art room set up. We had a dog's breakfast of miss-matched tables, different heights, reject plast chairs, and sundry shelving that I scrounged. He said;"You need new furniture. Order it!". I could have hugged him. We ordered large tables for both art rooms in a blue grey arborite. Because the tables are higher[counter height], we also had to get new stools. The other art teacher and I both laughed to ourselves. Sadly, the stools have adjustable legs, and I have to walk around with an allen key to tighten them before and after school. Cost for the furniture? $10,000.00!

Tom.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Very nice set up Pres.

 

I too started teaching in a basement room, though, not for my ceramics classes. I taught the intro level class, and my Drawing classes there. It was in the basement of the original 1897 school. It had been many things over the years. I liked it, because it was separate from the main high school, so I didn't get bothered a lot. It was also fairly comfortable, due to the old school geothermal system (Being partially below ground). Luckily, I did have windows, and even a fire escape I opened on warm days. I called it the "Hobbit Door", because it definitely wasn't a full-sized escape.

I did Ceramics in the other art room, which had a pretty nice set up, with a wheel and shelving area, with a kiln room.

 

At my second school, the Art Room used to be an auto shop. It even still had the garage door and large floor grate. It was a nice versatile studio, but the heating and cooling in that thing were pretty bad.

 

My current room was fairly well designed, minus the electrical outlets, which are severely lacking. Sadly, the room lost about a third of its size, several years ago, which was before I came. The art staff used to be at least one and a half, with the half, teaching middle school as well. So one room was all high school, and the other part high school, part middle school. The room was then downsized, with the middle school, high school part becoming a Spanish room. It is now a Special Education classroom. You can still tell it used to be one room. There are connecting doors, and a two sided sink, that is now divided by a wall.

 

The worst thing is, the original sturdy art tables, were exiled by one of the past instructors. She thought they were too big for the room, and were moved to the new Spanish Room, which used to be the Art Room. They were then taken to where the Spanish Room is currently. So I'm left with some short, adjustable legged (See wobbly legged) tables. They don't work for drawing, because if one person is erasing, while someone is drawing, a fist fight almost breaks out. So if they aren't sturdy enough for trouble free erasing, you know you can't properly wedge on them. I tried to get the old ones back, but the current Spanish teacher, really likes them. I also talked to the Principal about getting new ones, but I'm on the bottom of a very long list, for such items. I even asked if my Art Club could fund raise for them. The answer was "No". I'm tempted to see how much it would be to build my own.

 

 

Benzine;

I feel your pain. We had a new principal come in and look at our art room set up. We had a dog's breakfast of miss-matched tables, different heights, reject plast chairs, and sundry shelving that I scrounged. He said;"You need new furniture. Order it!". I could have hugged him. We ordered large tables for both art rooms in a blue grey arborite. Because the tables are higher[counter height], we also had to get new stools. The other art teacher and I both laughed to ourselves. Sadly, the stools have adjustable legs, and I have to walk around with an allen key to tighten them before and after school. Cost for the furniture? $10,000.00!

Tom.

 

 

Isn't it marvelous how it just seems to happen when we have the right people see what we daily overlook!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Benzine    610

Funny you should say that TJR. When I looked up, what I thought it would cost for me to get new tables and stools, it ended up being about $10 000.

My favorite art tables, are like those Pres has in the photos he included. A couple inches thick, and solid as all get out. Sadly, even if I could get the funds for those, I really don't have the space.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pres    896

Funny you should say that TJR. When I looked up, what I thought it would cost for me to get new tables and stools, it ended up being about $10 000.

My favorite art tables, are like those Pres has in the photos he included. A couple inches thick, and solid as all get out. Sadly, even if I could get the funds for those, I really don't have the space.

 

I put 2X8 workbench type tables in the second room. They came from Sam's club. The price-sinfully low. They could be used in rows for students of all sorts of work. I liked them for glazing as they didn't take as much space and were more versatile to arrange.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TJR    359

Funny you should say that TJR. When I looked up, what I thought it would cost for me to get new tables and stools, it ended up being about $10 000.

My favorite art tables, are like those Pres has in the photos he included. A couple inches thick, and solid as all get out. Sadly, even if I could get the funds for those, I really don't have the space.

 

Benzine,Pres;

I realized that I didn't say how many tables, so this would affect the cost. It's all academic anyway, if your principal doesn't support you.You do have to be aggressive in these situations, or the money will be spent elsewhere. I ordered 16 tables. They are smaller than 4by 8.Possibly 4 by 6? You can seat 6 students around them comfortably. And 60 chairs. The chairs are a pain as I mentioned, as the legs are adjustable. Sometimes you will come across a chair with three legs! Some joker has hidden a leg, and the quiet girl is trying to sit on a 3 legged stool without complaining. Gotta love it!

If you have a carpentry shop in your division, not even in your school, they can make you tables for the cost of materials. I have done that before. Also had open shelving built.

TJR.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×