A Different Angle

I’ve been reading Teacher Tom’s blog almost every day for about a month.  He’s an inspiring educator, and I just love reading his descriptions of play based curriculum.  Almost two weeks ago I got together with my Friday Art Homeschool group, and a very playful learning experience happened! One of my youngest students is a 6 year old boy, that tends to finish more quickly than the rest, and is ready to try something else. I take a lot of photos of the kids and their creations, and he asked me if he could take a photo of his fabric collage.

    He took about five and showed them to me.  I showed him how to zero in on the artwork and have less table showing and more art. He tried again, and liked the result. Other students were still working on their fabric collages, and  he ended up roaming around and taking a bunch of pictures. We are fortunate to have the use of a wonderful space (the Port Angeles Boys and Girl’s Club) all to ourselves during the school day and he got some really interesting pictures.  I heard him say, “I want this one to be blurry.”  His mom noticed that he was shooting unusual angles too.  He was planning and thinking about how to use the camera in interesting ways which he hadn’t been instructed in. He was so excited and incredibly engaged! 

   Luckily as this is my own program, and not one where I’m employed by someone else, I could allow him this time to experiment and explore. It really reinforced my ideas about child centered learning. When I looked through the photos I found some very interesting pictures.


   I have to admit there were about twenty of his feet and the ground, so I saved the best one and deleted the rest.


   He continued to use the camera during our break between activities. Later that day everyone else wanted to take photos of their artwork, so the whole group got in on the action.  

I am lucky to have been given a great digital camera.  I wish I had about ten of them so that my students could all roam around looking for interesting things to take photos of! I’m sure we’d all love to play around with images!  Just heard today  about a new open source program called GIMP, so perhaps this idea could really blossom for the fall.


About francifularts

I am an independent art educator. I had my first experience teaching ceramics when I was 24 and worked in the University for Youth program at the University of Denver. As an elementary school teacher I always found myself integrating the arts across the curriculum, which led to me working as an artist in the schools. In May of 2008 I began a master's program with Lesley University in their Creative Arts in Learning Program. It was a truly transformative and incredible experience which led me to decide to devote the rest of my teaching career to teaching art, and through the arts. About the same time that I completed my master's degree in January of 2011 I was hired to teach art in two different programs. I have never been happier in my work as a teacher, and I really appreciate the wonderful professors and cohort of fellow teachers I studied with at Lesley University. I also want to thank all of the wonderful arts educators that I have met online through the TAB/choice list serv for their thoughtful posts and insightful suggestions for teaching art!
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