Thursday, September 12, 2013

From Recall to Higher-Order Thinking

This year is all about growth! Both student growth and teacher growth. With common core and an increased focus on literacy in the art classroom, we are challenged to look at our weaknesses and evolve to meet new standards of learning. Last year, my team and I spent a large amount of time working on converting our curriculum to include more writing and reading. Two years ago, I went through the process of adding quizzes to my classroom to check student's ability to recall the information they were assigned to read. This mostly assured me that students were being held accountable for reading the material as sometimes they would get away with simply completing the project by looking at examples. Now, my task is to take a basic recall quiz and turn it into one that pushes students to answer questions about comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation.

I used a very simple and helpful guide I found on pinterest to learn more about how these questions could appear in the art classroom. Then, I reflected on my current quiz questions which included one such as this:
1. Which objects appear the largest in a drawing?
A. Objects in the foreground
B. Objects in the middle ground
C. Objects in the background
The answer to this question was simply provided in the assigned reading and it does not ask students to apply their knowledge. So I came up with a series of new questions that challenge students to apply and then analyse.
Apply: In this image, which part is the foreground?

 Analyze: Which option shows the correct use of proportion?


 And I have even added a question where students have to choose the drawing that shows the most depth in order to fulfil the evaluation question. I believe these new questions will test more than if my students can read the information and put it down on paper but if they actually understand it.

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