ART M any teachers spend hours creating teach- ing resources that have already been developed in textbooks and textbook ancillar- ies (art reproductions, worksheets, tests, CD-Roms or DVDs, videos, and artist biographies that supple- ment today 9s textbooks). Because every art teacher will \x2nd a new way to use a textbook in his or her teaching, there are probably as many di erent ways o% using art textbooks as there are art teachers. Choosing a Textbook How and why you intend to use a textbook should be important con- siderations as you select textbooks %or a course.
Choose books with %eatures that your students will actually use. Ask questions such as: " How important are a glossary and index to you? " Are the art reproductions the ones you want your students to know?
" Are the art reproductions large enough %or students to see the important details? " How true is the color? " Are there artists 9 biographies?
" Will your students be able to understand the writing? " Is the information in it correct? " Do topic and chapter reviews cover main points thoroughly?
" Do they encourage higher level thinking skills? " Does the book introduce techniques you will be ... more. less.
teaching? " How easy to follow are the technique illustrations?<br><br> " Will this book provide meaning%ul opportunities %or reading and writing about art? Look %or %eatures within text- books that you o%ten dig up yoursel% or wish you had time to develop. Using Textbooks Effectively Suggestions \xfor getting the most \xfrom art textbooks.<br><br> Kaye Passmore How to Use a Textbook One o% the \x2rst decisions you make i% you have a textbook, is how to use it. " Will you have the students read straight through the book cover- ing the topics in the order that they are introduced in the text or will you use the chapters out o% order? " Will you move through the material based on art history time periods?<br><br> " Will you approach subjects based on media and techniques or art elements and principles, or will you organize your course around themes? " Will students each have a book to take out o% the room or do you have class sets that remain in the artroom? Some teachers just use textbooks %or re%erence and others use them to create a structure %or their whole course.<br><br> In one of my (rst artrooms, I %ound three classroom sets o% small, thin art textbooks \x2lled with col- ored illustrations o% cgreat d art. Ex- cept %or my own posters and slides, these were my teaching resources and my main means %or introducing students to examples o% %amous art. Textbooks in an art room?<br><br> Yes, textbooks are an important art teaching tool. Textbooks can \xfree teachers to teach more thoroughly with richer content and use time 4both theirs and their students 4more e\xf\xfectively. Whenever I wanted students to see exemplars or get art history background for a studio project, I 9d give each student a set of the three books and tell them to turn to certain pages where we 9d discuss the art.<br><br> Basically, I was just using the illustrations. It worked, and the seventh grad- ers enjoyed paging through the books and making discoveries %or themselves (one of the joys of art textbooks). The (rst year I taught a high school art history/studio course, I didn 9t use a textbook so I spent a lot o% my time searching %or re- sources 4both print in%ormation and visuals.<br><br> The %ollowing year we began using textbooks, which simpli\x2ed my li%e considerably. Students read the text be%ore we discussed it in class. On tests I could hold them account - able %or the in%ormation and art reproductions in the textbook.<br><br> I would show slides and large reproductions in class and the books provided students with a study resource. Just the sequenc- ing o% the in%ormation in the book helped students understand the fow o% art periods and styles over time. Today 9s art textbooks are a long way from the thin ones I (rst used.<br><br> Art textbooks and their ancillaries can provide a wealth o% in%ormation and inspiration to students and their teachers. They have been incredibly help%ul %or me. Kaye Passmore is Assistant Pro%es- sor o% Art at Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey and a con- tributing author %or Davis Publica- tions, www.davisart.com.<br><br> Curriculum Structure Some teachers, schools, and dis- tricts structure their whole school or district art program around a textbook series. This is particular- ly true in elementary schools. By using a series that incorporates a spiral curriculum in conjunction with their own printed curricu- lum guide and state standards, they ascertain that students learn increasingly complex skills, techniques, and knowledge in a manner that is appropriate to their developmental levels.<br><br> Research Textbooks are an easy resource %or students to use as they begin research projects. Students may thumb through the text to select a subject to research or teach - ers may assign them topics. Students can read a section in a textbook about an artist or an art style be%ore they peruse the Internet, view CD 9s or visit the library.<br><br> Many textbooks have art- ist biographies, reproductions o% their art, and website suggestions either in the book or an ancillary. From this in%ormation students can design posters about an artist, create their own art works based on some o% the reasons an artist produced in a certain style, or present reports with visuals to other students. Techniques Technique illustrations %ound in many textbooks can help students review a sequence o% steps as they work on a project.<br><br> This means they can work more independent- ly and remember on their own what to do next. Inspire Creativity Unusual art illustrations in text- books can inspire students 9 own creativity and suggest di erent approaches to solving a problem. Textbooks o%ten include student art examples that allow students to see how others have solved similar art problems.<br><br> Literacy With the current emphasis on literacy and reading development, textbooks provide an opportunity %or reading about art. Textbooks use art terms in context that can aid in teaching vocabulary and spelling. Contemporary art text- books and their teacher 9s editions present ideas %or encouraging students to write about art.<br><br> The Advantages of Textbook Use Textbooks can suggest curriculum structure, provide a beginning point \xfor student research, introduce topics and projects, describe sketchbook assignments, inspire creativity, provide opportunities \xfor developing literacy skills within art, encourage independent learning, and provide in\xformation and review o\xf art techniques and methods. cThe frst year I taught high school art, I didn 9t use a textbook so I spent a lot o\xf my time searching \xfor resources 4both print in\xformation and visuals. d First in Art Education Since 1901 davisart.com