Come into the art room at Whitesville Central School where students choose how to express their ideas. The children in elementary art class are busy making their personal works of art. The ideas and energy of these students have fueled the teaching setting of choice-based art. Every week, over a hundred students use the studio classroom and choose the material that will best express their artistic ideas.
The classroom is full of activity and the noise level is conducive to artistic thought. All the students are engaged and on task either working alone or in a small group. Children know where to find the materials and how to set up their own work space. At the end of class, each student is responsible for clean- up. Many forms of sharing, reflection and celebration take place at the end of each class.
One of the fundamental benefits of choice based art programs is the support, space and time that teachers provide children to realize and exercise freedom of thought. Choice Based Art promotes student inquiry, self-expression and creativity. This transition at Whitesville Central School has been supported by a partnership with Alfred University Pre-Service Teachers who are also engaged in Choice Based pedagogy. If you would like to learn more about Choice Based Art, please feel free to contact Chris Brown at Whitesville Central School or Corrie Burdick at Alfred University.
By: Tessa Levitt, CA BOCES Professional Development and Whitesville Curriculum Coordinator