COETAIL – Course 3 Week 1

At this very moment in time, my class is engaged in their 4th Unit of Inquiry for the year –

Trans-disciplinary Theme –  How We Express Ourselves

Central Idea – A powerful piece of art engages the audience and invites a response.

The main focus of this unit is dancing and how we express emotions through movement.  Interpreting images learning engagements have been conducted .  One of which was “Blow Art”.  This is actually using water based paint and blowing through a straw to spread the paint however way you wish….sort of like what Jackson Pollock did.   Kids were then free to interpret their painting anyway they liked.  Some of their creations, to them, looked like bunnies whilst others may have interpreted it as different types of vegetables.

Their creation was open to their interpretation.

What we ended up with was a fantastic collection of child paintings that can mean different things to different people.  Children were free to engage their imaginations without fear of being wrong or corrected.  To me, this is the purest form of visual literacy.  Without being told what to wear or what medicine is needed for which symptom, by the media, children can interpret images anyway they damn well feel like.  And that`s fine by me.

There were a couple of good reads this week but a short but pleasant reading interview with George Lucas offering his views on education caught my eye.  Lucas didn`t state anything surprising however I did enjoy this part –

I actually really, really like the wording of this.  The comparison of mathematical communication to musical communication being at the opposite ends of the circle I found quite interesting as mathematics and music are, in essence, quite similar.

Historically, visual communication is a skill that hasn`t received the same importance as math or language in the elementary classroom.  Are school leadership teams too stuck on the teaching of reading and writing when, at the end of the day, most of them are going to get it eventually anyway?  Aren`t most of them going to get it incidentally?  Aren`t a lot of us (with fear of stereotyping pushed firmly to the side…erm…MALES) criticised for not expressing ourselves or our emotions?  
So what does my blog look like and what needs ito be tinkered with to make it more visual?
Feedback welcome of course!!!!!  I kind of like looking at my blog as it displays a photo of the middle of my home country that I took out the airplane window.  My background image were some of the posters/anchor charts from my classroom and down the right side was my reader, twitter feed and calendar.  I have drop down lists so I can find posts from each week of my course.
What I`d really like is one of those world maps where it shows people who are looking at my blog or who have visited my web page.
Well it may not be everyone`s cup of tea but, hell, at least it doesn`t look like this – 

2 thoughts on “COETAIL – Course 3 Week 1

  1. Wow~ you blog is looking great, Travis! The aerial photo you took is amazing~ it’s so clear! I like what the photo symbolizes. To me, it represents how teaching and learning is all part of a magical journey. The organization of your blog is good too. You should be able to get one of those world map widgets or hook up a status counter on your page which lets you see who’s visiting. Keep up the good work!

  2. Travis, I admire your ability to create a clean blog design that is well organized and easy to navigate. The pull down menus are a great way to quickly access all of your postings. While I liked the photos of student work in the background and what they represented, this format does make it easy for the reader to focus on your posts. You have avoided any clutter and the space around the blog is refreshing. Impressive!

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