• Mrs. Arzillo
    Art Teacher
    Northwest Middle
     iRead 7:25-7:45
     1st Period 
     2nd Period 8:36-9:21
     3rd Period 9:50-10:35
     4th Period 10:38-11:23
     5th Period 12:27-1:12
     6th Period 1:15-2:00

       Education in the arts stimulates the imagination, develops self-esteem and encourages openness towards the opinions of others. A complete art program allows every student to increase positive attitudes towards self, others, and the environment through creative experiences. Problem solving and creative learning encourage students to connect visual knowledge to other subjects and to respond with innovation, understanding, flexibility and imagination.

       I plan to create a safe, secure, and caring environment where students know that their ideas, opinions, and suggestions will be respected by the teacher and the class. I will promote mutual respect and support in the classroom, where students feel safe in expressing concerns or asking questions without fear of ridicule or feeling unintelligent. It is important for the classroom to be a continuous learning environment in which the students develop a positive self-image through a variety of learning experiences and activities. My students will be given the opportunity to generate original, personal ideas, and are encouraged to share those ideas with others.

       Art is more than just making things. It is the integration of creating with art history, aesthetics, and art criticism. It is important for me to add more substance to my teaching than just having students draw, or paint, or sculpt. They need to know how and why it was created in the past. They need to understand their own views on art, and how they perceive it. All of this cannot be achieved without first building a solid foundation of understanding the principles and elements of art. Each grade level will be introduced to new concepts that build and expand upon the experiences from previous grades. All students, at every grade level will be offered a range of experiences in color, design, drawing, painting, sculpture and crafts. I will consider the developmental stages and individual needs of each child.

       Art encourages basic and advanced problem-solving skills in a variety of contexts. I feel it is crucial to make sure that students make the connections between the content and the activities in order to achieve complete understanding. I will create projects that are designed to foster students' higher order thinking through inspiration rather than imitation. My classroom will be a place of discovery where students find art rather than hear about it. I will provide the students with objects and ideas for the children to use them as resources to help fuel creative thinking.

       Art is particularly useful because it creates a situation where the students are able to experiment, create and interpret hence discovering their own understandings and awareness about themselves and the world. It has been well documented that children's learning is most effective, not when subjects are dissected, but when they are combined. By looking at and learning about all aspects of art, we can connect the arts to other disciplines. I believe that art is everywhere in our surrounding environment, and one of my goals is to have the students try to understand and figure out how art fits into their everyday lives. Art is connected to every subject in a school’s curriculum and, by interconnecting a multidisciplinary art program, students not only benefit from the structure of each class, but also from their diversity. It is important for me to select units of study to coordinate with the classroom teacher; creating art across the curriculum. Students can further explore social studies, history, science, math and language arts while using their hands and minds to create works of art. My art instruction also includes study of art in past and present cultures from around the world to enable students to gain appreciation and understanding of their own heritage and other cultures.

       Discussions revolving around an artwork are important; whether they are positive or negative, in favor or unaccepting, harsh or flattering, all are essential. What would art be if not discussed, analyzed, and challenged? The students will evaluate their own artworks and those of their peers - building off of each other’s ideas and feedback. I want my students to understand that art is personal, individual, and may create different reactions than expected by including more critical dialogue through both classroom discussion and journal writings. Students will learn that art is open to a variety of interpretations; they will understand that there is more than one right answer and everyone’s opinion will be noted and valued.

       My aim is to develop aesthetically responsive, literate, and creative students with a life-long interest and involvement in the arts. I hope that I am able to achieve a classroom atmosphere that is fun, supportive, and accommodates different abilities and learning styles. Where art is concerned, it is the process of creating - exploring, discovering, and experimenting - that has the greatest value.