MacKenzie Art Gallery, post visit lesson 2

Class: Grade 6                                                                        
Topic: Identity
Subject: Arts Ed.

Post-lesson 2 after to students visit MacKenzie Art Gallery 
Content: In response to the art of Semchuk and Nicholas, students respond with their own piece of art while understanding that their own cultural background and experiences will affect their own art response. This lesson can easily span two to three additional lessons, especially to incorporate good discussion.
Outcomes and Indicators:
CR6.1 Create personal responses to a variety of arts expressions (e.g., respond to music using poetry, or respond to visual art using music). a. Demonstrate critical and creative thinking when responding to the work of Saskatchewan and other Canadian dance, drama, music, and visual artists (e.g., composers, graphic artists, architects, actors, filmmakers). b. Recognize that cultural background and experiences affect responses to arts expressions and the understanding of symbols and meanings. c. Discuss interpretations of arts expressions and create own expressions in response to the original work
Prerequisite Learning: Students need to come to class having researched any symbols and meanings with their own cultural background (ie: cross of Jesus Christ may be significant to some Christians, a national flag, a dreamcatcher, specific song, colour, or food, etc.). Parental help may have been necessary for these at home conversations.
Lesson Preparation Equipment/Materials Students choice of art medium’s supplies, as previously approved by teacher. Advanced Preparation Students have previously been asked to research any of their own cultural symbols. If these include any artifacts, the students may wish to bring them, or a picture of them.
Set: (15 min) Ask for student volunteers to share a symbol and its meaning within their own cultural background. Teacher goes first if there is hesitancy. My example: Christmas songs have deep meaning to me because it reminds me of my European grandmother who loved to sing, especially Christmas songs. She died when I was 16. Allow sharing and discussion to help students understand that each of our different cultural backgrounds and experiences affect the responses to arts expressions as well as the understanding of symbols and meanings. A symbol to one (ie: food) may have significant meaning to one but not to another. This is great because it adds variety, diversity, and different perspectives to our lives, enhancing our world view. Thinking back to our visit to the Mackenzie Art Gallery a few weeks ago, think about the featured artists we learned about (Semchuk and Nicholas). How did their different cultural background (remembering Semchuk is Ukrainian Polish and her husband was Nisichawayasihk Cree) and experiences affect responses to their arts expressions? (teacher may need to give prompts: Semchuk’s photography or Nicholas’s poetry).

Development: (25 min) Students create their own expressions in response to the original work of Semchuk and Nicholas using the medium they previously discussed with the teacher the week prior. Choices may include but are not limited to: photography using their own cell phones, visual art, sculpture using modeling clay, literature (poetry, short story), etc. The art has to have been pre-approved.

Closure: (10 min) Students share their interpretations of the arts expressions they created in response to the original work.

Extensions: A student may have a special family member that can contribute to the discussion on how cultural background and experiences affect responses to arts expressions and the understanding of symbols and meanings. This family member could attend class to further deepen understanding.

Adaptive Dimension: Students may need more time to create their own expressions in response to the original work of Shemchuk and Nicholas.

The students may need to be reminded of the Mackenzie Art Gallery exhibition they saw as it has now been a few weeks since having been there.

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