What do artists observe?
Why do artists observe?
How to teach SHoM: Observe?
Artists are constantly observing and engaging with the world. How can students become aware of this behavior? How can students use this behavior? This poster has a few ideas of how to teach this habit.
How to write a lesson objective about observe?
At my school, we use "Classroom Instruction that Works" so we set up our objectives in the following format using know, understand, and be able to. I have learned that usually the "know" and "understand" stays the same throughout a unit but the "be able to" changes daily to align to the activity of the day. My objectives usually look like this:
Know: Observe (Basic Knowledge, what are students defining)
Understand: Artists observe to get inspiration by seeing details and the world around them. Artists observe to learn new skills and techniques. Artists observe to improve skills. (Big Idea)
Be Able To: (Aligns to activity of the day)
Where to start?
Observation is one of the most important skills that an artist can have. Over the years, I have found myself teaching observation skills very differently.
In my classroom, I tend to ask two questions to my students, what do artists observe and why do artists observe. I like to provide students with a mind map activity to complete in groups to start this unit. Why? I can see what they think they know about this and listen to their discussions. Also, this provides documentation of a pre-assessment of this unit. I usually do another mind map at the end of the unit to compare students answers.
Sometimes I use Padlet as an assessment. I love Padlet! My students also love to use padlet. (Below is a 3rd grade example of a pre-assessment using Padlet.) I have my students sign up using Google. There is an option to display their names at the top of their post. (I have it shut off in this one so I can share it here). My students love Padlet because it is like a social media platform. They can get images and GIFs from the web, leave comments and likes to each other's post.
Padlet as an assessment
Still Life Drawing
Still life drawing is a great place to start teaching young artists how to observe.