West Milwaukee Intermediate School Art Students Express Themselves

West Milwaukee Intermediate School Art Students Express Themselves
Posted on 10/05/2020
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According to Dan Walker, Art teacher at West Milwaukee Intermediate School, virtual learning can inspire students to be as creative as ever. “The students and I recognized distance learning as a unique time for artists: we were all working in our separate makeshift studios, we all had access to different materials, and we all had different inspirations that drove our ideas. We knew if we worked hard, we could put our creative stamp on this very unique time,” said Walker. “Planning an Art Show is not our typical “start of the year activity” but it’s something my students wanted to do.”

To begin, Walker shared a “choice board” which outlined 16 sample projects designed to help students (grades six through eight) launch their creative process.  After they made their choice, they began creating art -- adding their own inspiration, strengths and interests with the life experiences that make them unique.  

“Students used four class sessions to develop their concept, make revisions, and critique their results. Wednesday Check and Connect days and breakout rooms were used for teacher critique and personalized instruction,” said Walker. “This is the first art show we’ve done that was fully created in a virtual learning environment.”

“We’ve got sculpture (with cookies!), pearlers, diamond dotz, and illustration as part of this show. I am proud of the cultural and expressionistic work shown by our young artists.  It puts a high standard on our work as we continue to define ourselves as artists through the lens of equity and deeper learning,” adds Walker.