Are You a Creativity Killer?
Raise your hand if you’ve ever begun your lessons by introducing a new artist for your students to study, showed them tons of images of the artist’s work and left it up as an example.
Raise your hand if you’ve ever used “tracers” for students to use as a starting point for their work.
Raise your hand if you’ve ever demonstrated, step-by-step, how to make something.
Raise your hand if you’ve ever drawn on student work or given student’s suggestions like “what if you put a tree there?”.
Chances are, at some point in your teaching, you’ve been a Creativity Killer. I’ve been one too, but I am determined to become a creativity cultivator, not a killer.
We cannot expect students to be truly creative if we continue to give them all of the answers.
As art teachers, we pride ourselves in getting students to think “outside of the box” and solve problems in unique and original ways. If a walk down the hallways of your school reveals 25 almost identical Starry Night paintings, creativity has obviously been squashed.
We cannot claim we teach critical thinking if we don’t allow students to think for themselves.
Why do art teachers do this? Does it make it easier to grade? To meet district standards and benchmarks? Are they afraid of losing control? Making a mess?
Are you a creativity killer?
If you haven’t been to Marvin Bartel’s art education website, it’s a must.