in the art room
Within my first fewmonths of teaching, Irealized that many of
my students werestruggling with
reading and writing,and that there was aneed to incorporateliteracy in all subjectareas at my building.
I need to encourage students tothink creatively.
How can I incorporate literacy in my classroom
while encouraging creativity?
What happens whenreflective writing isincorporated intoeighth grade art?
I decided to implementreflective writing into my
classroom to help studentscreate goals for their
artwork, brainstorm newideas, and reflect upon theirprocess for each art project.
I felt this would scaffoldstudents to write as theyreflected over their art
making in a safe, positiveclassroom environment.
personal art journals."
"As I set out a pile of old bookson the first day of my eighth gradeart class, students were confused
with the materials, yet eager tocreate. I explained to them
that these old books would berepurposed to create
Art Journals"How are we
going to draw inthe books with
wordseverywhere?" "What will
we putinside thebooks?"
"Can we drawinside? Can I
"Can I look inside ofyours?"
"Do we get to take themhome? Can I keep it?"
8th18 students 9 males
small class- one
on one instruction
My Research Goals
Incorporate self-reflection and self-assessment
Goal setting/ Connect goals to artwork
Implement reading & writing
Build relationships & classroom community
Literature What is Metacognition and Reflective Writing?
The Benefits of Metacognition
Self-Assessment and Reflective Writing Strategies
Metacognition or thinking about thinking involves the awarenessand regulation of thinking processes (Amelia, El-Hindi)
As students begin to think about their thinking, they begin to graspthe relationship between art and the world around them (Andrews)
McDonald and Dominguez (2009) concluded that students can consider thefollowing: What is something I discovered for the first time? What did I findthat surprised me? What happened reminds me of What am I wondering
Methodology - Theory According to psychologist
John Flavell and theMetacognition Theory,
metacognition is the abilityof one to manage and
monitor the input, storage,search, and retrieval of the
contents of their ownmemory.
I wanted students to use their metamemory(Flavell) to organize their thoughts, search
for ideas, and think about their thinking. Usingjournals, students would use metacognitivestrategies to be actively monitoring their
personal artistic process.
Methodology - Sub questions
How can I scaffold students to helpthem engage in making meaningfulartwork?
In what ways is writing linked tostudents metacognitive thinkingprocess?
What happens when (a) art journals,(b) co-created rubrics, and (c) artcriticism reflections areincorporated?
How can students "think about their thinking"?
Methodology STRATEGIESArt Journals
Scoring Guides & Rubrics
Student Surveys: My Art Experience& Process Survey
Student Work Samples
Examples of Strategies
Writing imprecise goals/Not artistic choicesSeeing reflection as being in the past/Fixed Mindset
Struggling with the writing component of Reflective Writing
Data Analysis - FindingsGOALS
CONNECTINGStudents goals were broad, andwere not always specific orpersonal to them.
to have a hidden image andto draw a successful image
to get an A+, be creative anddraw something nice
The goals that students are writingare not meaningful to their artwork.
They are concerned about finishing ontime, trying their best, or being
creative. What does that even looklike? (Inquiry Journal, February 8th).
Fixing GoalsSecond Project: Color Wheel
I started interviewing studentsto get them thinking about
their artistic process.
I asked the students "Are youaware of your decision
making?" and "Describe yourprocess."
Students could apply theirgoals to the decision makingby explaining why they were
making artistic choices.
PROCESS VS. PRODU
Revisited Goal Setting:
Students explained how goalsare written for something to
look forward to.
Art goals in the classroom arecreated to strive for
something and accomplishnew things.
Data Analysis - Findings
After the secondproject, I discoveredhow my studentsbelieved thatreflection was in thepast and completed,therefore they had afixed mindsettowards their work.
Students wanted toget things right thefirst time and wereafraid to makemistakes.
Today a focus student explained herprocess. "I choose things that I like. Ipracticed to help with the details so Ididn't mess up.
-Inquiry Journal, March 9th
"reflection is going over what youvealready done and improving it or(thinking) about things you couldvedone."
The exit tweet providedimmediate feedback for onhow I could better meet theneeds of all of my studentsin the class. The students
explained how they liked theidea of tweeting somethingto me and that they would
appreciate having a reply totheir tweet.
Growth Mindset Survey
"I'm not creative. I can't draw.""I can't do this.""I messed up, I want to startover." "Will do you this for me?""I don't want to try this.""They are so much better thanme."
"I'm on the right track!""I can try my best."
"This is going to take some time.""Mistakes help me learn."
"What can I do to make this evenbetter?"
"I'm going to ask for help.""I won't give up."
Growth Mindset SurveyResults
Fixed: 45%down to 15%
Growth: 55%increased to
I finally feel the presence of growth mindset beginning to settle into myclassroom. Hearing the students talk to one another about their artwork
and showing perseverance is happening. -Inquiry Journal April 14.
Data Analysis -Findings
WRITINGIN REFLECTIVE WRITING
My class couldreflect verballythrough interviews,surveys, and classdiscussions, but hada hard time writingdown their thoughtsin class.Complained aboutwriting in art class.
My Art Experience Survey
Although some studentsdidn't enjoy writing in art
class, they found beinginterviewed helped them
Implemented MetacognitionTop 3 Choices:
I'm thinkingI'm wonderingI just learned
Growth fromJanuary to
"What is art?Why is art
One Page Portfolios
"How I make my art is unique. Ive enjoyed this class because we weretaught different ways to make art that is useful and effective.
Different techniques I learned were to make my lines light and gentle so theyreeasy to erase. I also learned that I just go straight into drawing, and I dont
really plan out my art." -Student Reflection
Intrepretation - Outcomes
Implementing growth mindset in my artroom encouraged students to be more
mindful of their thoughts andencouraged their creative process and
making mistakes. As the semesterconcluded, my class became
more aware of their successes and feltproud of their creations.
Implications & LimitationsI would advise to implement reflective writing the first day with the students as
incorporating writing into the art classroom is not always the first thing thatstudents think of when they come to our class. It is crucial to welcome students
thoughts and encourage their creativity through art making and writing.
Philosopher JohnDewey explains thatwe do not learn from
our experiencesunless we reflect
upon them. Asstudents areexperiencing
reflection, teachersshould take the timeto reflect upon their
practices, as well. Semester long class insteadof entire year
Where I fit in theLiterature + Art
Implementing journals and reflective writingmade me as a teacher and a researcher morereflective about my own teaching practices.
The power of growth mindsetGrowth mindset empowered my students topersevere through reflective writing, eventhough they had never written in their art
One page portfolios takeaway
The FutureIf I continued with my study, I would incorporate...
More opportunities for students to respondto ideas within their art journals.Study how providing journal prompts at thebeginning of each class would impactstudents.Allow students time to free write before eachproject.
After action research I will...Continue implementing and experimentingreflective writing strategies.Encourage growth mindset.Provide feedback and more opportunities.Reflect upon my own practices.
Fellows ExperienceMy time as a teaching fellow has
held me accountable forreflecti