The art program at Rohan Woods School has a comprehensive approach. Students are exposed to all facets of art which include not only studio production but art history, art criticism and aesthetics. Students come to understand that to create their own art, they need to have an understanding and knowledge of other artists and cultures. Starting as early as Junior Kindergarten (age 4), students are introduced to a plethora of art movements from Prehistoric and Impressionism to Modern and Contemporary. Classes actively engage in art discussions and critiques applying appropriate vocabulary.
Students are exposed to many mediums throughout the year. Drawing, painting, fiber art, printmaking, sculpture and ceramics are all part of the robust art program. Research and writing are a part of the program as well. First Graders look forward to studying about Chinese New Year and taking part in the annual Dragon Parade. Third Graders are introduced to the folk art from Oaxaca Mexico and practice painting techniques specific to the art of that region. Fifth Graders create Kachinas to showcase at an all school assembly in the spring.
By Sixth Grade, students have received several years of specific instruction in technique along with multiple opportunities to practice the skills. This allows students to create wonderful works of art. Their art education culminates in a final Ceiling Tile project in which your child selects and researches an artist, practices public speaking with a slide presentation featuring the artist and creates a reproduction of one of the chosen artist's pieces on a ceiling tile to be left as a legacy to the school.
Images of people are called Portraits. During the month of September students are challenged to create an image or likeness of him or herself, commonly referred to as a Self-Portrait. Rembrandt produced more than seventy self-portraits, making his face one of the most famous in art. Classes discuss and review the ideas of proportion, facial feature placement, size and shape of lines, and appropriate choice of colors. Students will examine, analyze and interpret clues to learn more about the artist and styles of self-portraits.
Beginning every year with Self-Portraits is a lesson I thoroughly enjoy teaching. It’s wonderful observing the improved drawing skills and confidence the children demonstrate. The completed Self-Portraits will be displayed outside the classrooms throughout the month of September and into October. Please take the opportunity to admire these beautiful creations.
As the classes complete their first unit on portraits they will be introduced to the Elements of Art. There are six visual elements, color, line, shape, form, space, and texture. These are the foundation upon which artists visually put together to make a statement. Art units and activities will reflect and reinforce these six elements. Students will develop critical thinking skills and evaluate works-of-art through sketchbook activities and discussions. They will explore the meaning of aesthetics and participate in class critiques.
“How important are the visual arts in our society? I feel strongly that the visual arts are of vast and incalculable importance. Of course I could be prejudice. I am visual art."
~Kermit the Frog