Posted in Miscellaneous

Young Artist Gallery Stroll

In my various travels, I’ve been able to attend some amazing art galleries and museums.  I’ve seen the Louvre, the d’Orsée, the Rodin Museum, the National Gallery, the Tate Modern, the National Portrait Gallery in London, and the Smithsonian, just to name a few.  These museums and galleries contain artwork that is technically amazing, inspiring, and connects to the human soul through drops of paint or clay.

On July 19th, I attended another art gallery.  The art displayed there will never grace the walls of the Louvre or the Smithsonian; probably no more than 150 people ever saw it.  And if it was graded, it might not even receive an “A”.  Yet, it was one of the best art galleries I’ve ever been to.

This summer, special education teacher candidates (including myself) have been teaching at elementary school summer programs for students with disabilities in the neighboring districts.  The Young Artist Gallery Stroll displayed the artwork these students did in class.

My class’ artwork

On a technical level, did their art compare to Monet, Rodin, or Bernini?  No.  Does that matter?  Not really.

So what does matter then?

As I walked around the room, looking at the various artwork, I saw their personalities come out in their artwork.  Art helped them express something about themselves; then, they got to share it with others.  That’s one important part.

Several of my students and their families were able to come.  My students were bursting with pride as they walked around the room.  People kept telling them what a good job they did.  So, they got recognized for a job well done.  That’s another important part.

It made me realize some important things about art in the classroom.

1. Art does not have to be perfect to be enjoyed.

  • Not a single project there was perfect, but it was one of the most enjoyable experiences with art I’ve ever had.

2. Focus on art as a form of expressing yourself.

  • Giving some choices for the project lets students show their creativity.

3. Give recognition for a job well done.

  • Make sure that you have some way of telling your students what a great job they did.  It not only makes them feel good in that moment, it might also inspire them to keep creating throughout their lives.

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Author:

My brother was diagnosed with autism before I was born. So, disabilities have been always been a major part of my life. That's one of the reasons I'm studying Special Education at BYU. In my life, I've found people who haven't experience with people with disabilities are really nervous about people with disabilities. I've also found that the scariest thing in life is the unknown. So, I created this blog to help demystify people with disabilities by sharing experiences I've had, my perspective, and hopefully other people's perspectives as well. This blog is not meant to romanticize people with disabilities or mitigate the difficulties associated with being a human being (goodness knows, we all have our faults and can be difficult to live with at times--disability or not). But instead, I hope to show day-to-day experiences and long-term perspectives to give more information about people with disabilities.

2 thoughts on “Young Artist Gallery Stroll

  1. use, as you said, it’s theirs and they created it. Thanks for sharing! As a mom of artistically talented children, every little line, dot, squiggle and lopsided circle they made growing up was amazing to me 🙂 I love creativity.

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