It seems that currently concepts of flexible learning in the Drawing and Mixed Media Level 4 course in which I teach are too scattered and more structure needs to be imbedded. In this plan I will develop a some new strategies and methods of engagement, for a project within this course 'The drawing log'. My Aim is that by embedding the right structure and flexibility students will become more engaged with the practice of drawing, engage with on line learning by sharing digital images and placing feedback, stay more up to date with self directed learning.
I teach on the level 4 Certificate in Creative Studies, an art and design foundation course. I will focus this plan around the Drawing and Mixed Media at paper that I co-facilitate, however at times I need to expand from that and talk about the greater context of Creative Studies.
Creative Studies Learners
We have a diverse range of learners - school leavers (some under 18), some returning to study or changing they path of study, mature students.
Students are here for many different reasons – a life change, a career change, for something to do, interested in further study in art and/or design.
Students often have complex personal lives – children, work, mental health issues, low confidence, families.
most of these learners are visual and experiential learners (Vark reference). Attendance is often a problem and we have a low course completion rate and retention is low - around 58%. We work in a shared studio, with a project based approach.
OE - my understanding of Open education is that it is a concept that seeks to make education more more accessible and bring down some of the barriers that surround education and the gaining of knowledge.
It is more than just recycling. It seemed to me that Sustainablity is a lense to look and operate under, one that we must adopt and instill so that it is a part of our thinking and practice, rather than something we think about later or something that is a separate entity to our practice; A way of thinking that is integrated in teaching, learning and living.
The main strategy I intend to implement came out of the definition "the capacity to endure"(wikipedia 2011), and in particular ensuring that the learning gained enables students to cope and thrive in their next step in their education. Knowing that my learners often have low confidence and require a great deal of pastural care on top of teaching. The human resource is one that needs to be considered as a sustainable entity. the
Currently I see my students come to the end of the year and they still have some major hang ups about drawing, I am still hearing the phrase "I cant draw". They start the year with an aversion to drawing and they seem to leave the year with an aversion to drawing. This is concerning and to me signals an area that needs to be addressed.
- I want to find out exactly what drawing skills and practices happen across the 4 design degrees, Fashion, Interiors, Communication, Product.
- Find out from other lecturers where creative Studies graduates are struggling in terms of their drawing.
- Then re-designing the course so that there are more supervised instructive workshops that get students with pencil on paper drawing.
Educating students well at this level has sustainable implications further down their path of study. Maintaining a high standard of graduates and a high completion rate is also very important for the sustainability of the course.
Other points on the discussion of sustainability - I think it is necessary to mention materials - sourcing sustainable materials, but using the materials in a mindful way. generating a culture of respect for materials, the the mentality and culture of a 'Throw Away Society' which we have operated in for quite some time now comes with a lack of awareness and respect for consumable Items, things have a finite disposable life. I see this again and again in my class room, with a general disrespect and disregard for materials and tools provided by the educator. Only providing tools and materials that cannot be easily accessed by learners, is a solution to this
- Including examples of indigenous artists and designers in lectures
- Encouraging indigenous learners to explore their Identity and cultural background as a subject matter through drawing.
- Maree visits (that includes a Treaty of Waitangi workshop), guest lecturers, using examples of indigenous practitioners.
- Making sure that these learners are able to access support through the polytech to Maori, Pacifica and other indigenous groups.
Te Whare Tapa Wha is a model developed By Mason Drury in 1982. It is the wholistc maori model for health and wellbeing but it also applies for some maori as approach to education. Understanding this model and what Maori(traditional) learners might be thinking and feeling when coming to or deciding to come to a course is important.
A teaching model that I think fits well with the course that I teach is Phil Races 7 Ripple model.
1)Wanting/needing. 2) Doing. 3)Making Sense. 4) Feed Back. 5)Practice. 6)Coaching, teaching. 7)Assessing.
I think that the 7 ripple model could be refelcted not only in the overall design of projects week to week, but of the design of the course over the year, how each project stacks ontop of the previous one. also it could be applied to daily workshop plans.
- internal assessment via Project or Portfolio,
- Project based delivery,
- Lectures, moodle, video, examples, step by step,
- face to face feed back,
- group feed back sessions
- short presentations
- one on one consultation
- engaging with online environment via digital image sharing
We have to be flexible to be inclusive of the needs of the individual circumstances each student. however at level 4 students still require a good deal of structure, pastural care, feedback, motivation, monitoring and support, my hunch is that we have too much flexibility in the areas of self directed study and there we need to well structured in more guided lessons. Maintaining some levels of flexibility but putting in more boundaries so that learning is more guided to ensure that they leave with a sufficient foundation in drawing. By doing this I think that other issues of monitoring and pastural care will be addressed.
- Each week will be themed. The theme will be posted weekly on the moodle, and also on a facebook page set up for the log.
- Have a 20 minute drawing log session at the beginning of each class to introduce the weekly theme, and make a drawing.
- I want to create a Facebook Group page. A Facebook Group is able to have a high security setting that is only viewed by the members of the group. Group members are able to post images and messages on this page.
- Students will be asked to make a weekly post of their best drawings, and leave feed back for peers. The idea with the facebook group is that students will engage with each others work by image sharing in a social online environment, and hopefully develop motivation and keep on top of a largely self directed project.
- The group will be administered by staff.
I also want to re structure the year plan and re-arrange the projects. With in each project I will look to put in place a project structure based on the The 7 Ripple model (I have already tested this out it seems to be working - Students are enjoying a more instructive approached, allows them safety and freedome to explore and experiment with drawing, and eliminating the whole 'get it wrong blocker'). Re-focus briefs and put more boundaries so they are more about practicing drawing and building up hand eye technical skills rather than having options to avoid drawing - i.e photography (they can take photography elective paper for this).
Hylén, Jan (2007). Giving Knowledge for Free: The Emergence of Open Educational Resources. Paris, France: OECD Publishing. p. 30. doi:10.1787/9789264032125-en. Retrieved 2010-12-03
Collis, B & Moonen, J (2001). Flexible Learning in a Digital World, Open and Distance Learning Series. London: Kogan page Ltd. p.10