Friday, January 10, 2014

Favorite book to teach for Art.... "The Dot"

I was a terrible artist as a child.  I couldn't cut, stay in the lines or make anything that looked anything at all like what the teachers and other students seemed to be making.  I was terrible at art and I didn't much want to do it. It wasn't until university that I discovered the cookie cutter reproductions of teacher created projects wasn't what being an artist was suppose to be. It was about exploring and playing and creating and making a mess and getting better at it a little at a time.

Every year in September when we go to do out first art project I look around and know that somewhere in the class there is someone who just KNOWS they are terrible at art. Someone who dreads taking out the paints. Someone who would rather be doing anything else.

That is why every September I read "The Dot" by Peter H. Reynolds to my students. If you don't already know that story you can listen to it here:

I always tear up a bit when I watch Zoé pass on her teachers words the the little boy who admired her work. A lesson well learned is a lesson shared.

After the students and I play with paint and paper and pens and felts and make dots. Lots of dots.  We have fun with the supplies and we learn that sometimes we like what we create and sometimes we don't. We also find out that art can be pretty easy and fun too. For our big finally we make a "Dot without making a dot." I love seeing the different ways students do this. I always learn a lot about my students when I look at their finished product.

 The book exists in French. It is called "Un bon point pour Zoé"   I love the little video above so I often turn off the volume and read my french version of the book as the movie plays on my smartboard.  What about you? Do you have a favorite art story or any other book you just love reading to your students?

PS - If you haven't seen it already check out

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