Units prepared by Shari Hofschire, Dr. Frances Thurber, and Dr. Joanne Sowell

UNIT THEME: Artists carefully observe the world around us and make choices about how to express their observations.

GOALS AND OUTCOMES: (Based on the National Standards)
Content Standard 1
Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes
Achievement Standard
K-4
Students use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.
5-8 Students intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of their experiences and ideas
9-12 Students conceive and create works of visual art that demonstrate an understanding of how the communication of their ideas relates to the media, techniques, and processes they use

Content Standard 3
Choosing and evaluating a range of subject matter, symbols, and ideas
Achievement Standard
K-4
Students select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning
5-8 Students use subjects, themes, and symbols that demonstrate knowledge of contexts, values, and aesthetics that communicate intended meaning in artworks
9-12 Students apply subjects, symbols, and ideas in their artworks and use the skills gained to solve problems in daily life

Content Standard 4
Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures
Achievement Standard
K- 4
Students know that the visual arts have both a history and specific relationships to various cultures
5-8 Students know and compare the characteristics of artworks in various eras and cultures
9-12 Students describe the function and explore the meaning of specific art objects within varied cultures, times, and places

KEY QUESTIONS:
Questions in parentheses are from the Prairie Visions Inquiry Chart. These general questions form a framework for designing questions more specific to each unit of instruction.
How does what I see in the work compare to what I see in the world? (What does the form of this work say about its context?
How does the medium of the work relate to its visual characteristics? (What are the elements and content of the work?)
How do artists go beyond simply recording the world? (How does art make meaning?)

KEY WORKS OF ART:
Nebraska Masterpieces: (Click on Reproduction for a printable version)
Kent Bellows, Over the Mermaid Lounge

Keith Jacobshagen Naming the Days (Rain in May, Platte Valley


LESSON IDEAS (SUB-THEMES):
1. Some artists choose to document the world in a realistic way.
2. Some artists represent the world in order to express an idea or opinion
.

LEARNING STYLES/DIFFERENTIATION:
This unit emphasizes:
Visual Intelligence
Logical Intelligence
Naturalist inelligence

MORAL DIMENSIONS OF TEACHING:
John I. Goodlad (Editor), Roger Soder (Editor), Kenneth A. Sirotnik (Editor), The Moral Dimensions of Teaching, Jossey-Bass; New Ed edition (November 16, 1993).
This unit encourages group discussion and listening to the ideas of others, a crucial skill for living in a democracy. It also deals with ways to get across one's ideas to others in order to affect society.
By using various instructional methods and encouraging hands-on art making activities this unit allows access for many different types of learners.
This unit encourages stewardship of the environment.

LESSON 1:

Lesson Sub-Theme
: Some artists choose to document the world in a realistic way.

Goals and Outcomes:
Students will look carefully at works of art and explain what they see.
Students will use their observations to speculate and draw conclusions about meaning.
Students will use a relief printmaking medium to create repeatable images.
Students will compare images made in different times and places.
Students will consider the importance of reproducing images for conveying information.

Key Questions:
What kinds of objects and/or people, has the artist chosen to document?
What medium has the artist used for his/her work? How does that affect the look of the work? What tools would the artist use for this medium?
What is the artist trying to tell us about the objects or people?

Key Works of Art:
Nebraska Masterpieces: Kent Bellows, Over the Mermaid Lounge , 1992

Keith Jacobshagen Naming the Days (Rain in May, Platte Valley, 2000

Maria Sibylla Merian The Miraculous Transformation and Unusual Flower-Food of Caterpillars, Germany 1679-83.
scroll down to plate 31 and click to enlarge

Albrecht Dürer, The Large Turf, 1503.
scroll down and click on Large Turf

Leonardo da Vinci. Notebooks, c. 1500.

Lesson Narrative:
Teacher Preparation: Visit the websites listed above. Copy plate 31 from the works of Maria Sibylla Merian, The Large Turf by Albrecht Dürer, and one or two of the drawings from Leonardo's Notebooks. Make a set of images for each small group (4 or 5 students in a group.)

Teacher Presentation and Group Discussion: Introduce Kent Bellows' self-portrait using the Nebraska Masterpieces poster. Use the Study this Work of Art section from the back of the poster paying particular attention to the questions:
Kent Bellows is known for his skill in drawing. What do you see in the work that would make someone say this? What different kinds of textures can you observe?
What makes this art work different from a photograph?
We often think of pencil drawings as sketches. Do you think this is a sketch or a finished drawing? Why?

Introduce Keith Jabobshagen's landscape using the Nebraska Masterpieces poster . Use the Study this Work of Art section from the back of the poster paying particular attention to the questions:
Have you ever seen a landscape like this?
Have you ever imagined a place like this or read a story with a setting like this?

These works are very different. One is a self-portrait and one is a landscape. One is a graphite and charcoal drawing and one is an oil painting. How are they alike? (Both artists have very carefully observed the world and recorded it acurately even if they mix objects from different contexts.)

Small Group Discussion: Look at the works by Maria Sibylla Merian, Albrecht Dürer, and Leonardo da Vinci. In your group discuss:
What kinds of objects are these artists depicting? Do you think it is important that they depict these objects accurately? What can you learn from these drawings? Could you learn this information if you didn't have an image to look at? How important do think illustration is to science?

Large Group Discussion and Activity:
Discuss what the students decided in their small groups. Would any of these images be important to science? Why or why not?

Have the students play "Telephone." Whisper a sentence or two to the first student in line and have each student whisper it to the next student. The last student will say the sentence out loud. (Make the sentence complex enough, depending upon the age of the children, that it will make the point.) Did the sentence change? Why do you suppose that happened? Could the same thing happen with drawings?

Teacher Preparation. Collect four leaves that are recognizably different in shape, but with some similarities. Arrange a station where students can individually draw a leaf on an 8.5" x 11" piece of white paper with a pencil.

Individual Task: Ask one student to choose a leaf from the four and draw it on a sheet of paper without anyone else watching. After the first student makes the drawing, take the leaves away and ask the next student to draw the leaf from the first student's drawing. Then take away the first drawing and ask the next student to draw from the previous student's drawing. The principle is the same as in Telephone. When everyone has had a chance to draw, show the last drawing to the class. Can they identify which of the four leaves was chosen (remember that only the first student saw the original leaf). How accurate were their drawings when they could not see the original leaf?

Teacher Presentation and Group Discussion: Look again at Maria Sibylla Merian's drawing. Do you think she studied the plants and insects? We can look at her works because they were printed through the medium of engraving, and those prints were photographed to put on the web. When an artist makes an engraving, they scratch the lines into a metal plate and then put ink on the plate and run the plate and the paper through a press to transfer the ink to the plate. (The etching process is similar but the lines are made in the plate with acid. To understand what an etching is go to the Museum of Modern Art website What is a Print?). This is a method for making many copies from the same plate. Before printmaking was invented, if someone wanted a book they had to sit down and copy it from another copy of the book - just like you did with the leaf drawing. What do you think happened to images in those books after they were copied many times, like your leaf drawing? Printmaking increased the accuracy of the images so they could all be just alike. Photography is also used to repeat images accurately. It would be hard to copy Kent Bellows drawing or Keith Jacobshagen's painting, but we can all enjoy the works of art because photography allows us to all see an accurate reproduction of the original work.

Teacher Preparation: Have each student bring a leaf to school. They will be making prints from their leaves.

Teacher Presentation: Use the Museum of Modern Art website What is a Print? to introduce students to a relief print in which the ink is held above the surface. Use the interactive demonstration of a woodcut. Instead of cutting away wood, students will be glueing string onto a piece of cardboard to create raised lines.

Individual Task: Each student will make a relief print from a leaf by painting the leaf with water soluble ink and pressing it on a 5" x 7" piece of paper (you may need to have larger pieces of paper if some leaves are bigger.) Each student will also make a relief print from a drawing of the leaf. Draw, not trace, the outline of your leaf on a 5" x 7" piece of cardboard or poster board. Draw a few of the interior lines of the leaf too. Now glue cotton string along the lines. When the glue dries roll ink over the string and press onto a piece of paper. Make three prints of your leaf. Are they all the same? What might make them a little different? When they dry, take one of your prints and use colored pencils to add details and color to the print. Glue your four images, your original drawing, your two prints, and your colored print onto a piece of construction paper.
Look at your four images. Which do you like best? Which is the most accurate?

Large group discussion: End this lesson with a discussion on why it might be important to accurately reproduce an image over and over again. Do we still do this today? Think of examples.

Instructional Strategies:
Teacher presentation.
Small group discussion
Large group discussion and activities.
Individual Art Making Tasks

Assessment Strategies:
Formative Assessment - Teacher observation and check for understanding during discussions.
Summative Assessment - Have the students followed directions correctly? Were the students able to assess their work? Did the students understand the importance of reproducing images accurately?

Interdisciplinary Linkages:
Science ­ scientific illustration

Resources and materials:
Krystek, Lee. The UnMuseum. Leonardo's Notebooks.
http://www.unmuseum.org/leosketch.htm
Other resources on Leonardo as both scientist and artist:
http://www.metmuseum.org/special/Leonardo_Master_Draftsman/draftsman_splash.htm

http://www.mos.org/leonardo/
http://library.thinkquest.org/3044/
http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/history/vinci.html
http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/leonardo_da_vinci.html
http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/leonardo/
http://www.artchive.com/artchive/L/leonardo.html

Madison, Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin Memorial Library Special Collections. Maria Sibylla Merian.
http://www.library.wisc.edu/libraries/specialcollections/womennature/sectionpages/MariaSibyllaMerian.html
Other resources on Maria Sibylla Merian as both artist and naturalist:
http://www.astr.ua.edu/4000ws/MERIAN.html
http://www.philographikon.com/msmerian.html
http://naturalhistory.mse.jhu.edu/ChronologicalTour/ChT_Merian.html
http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/merian_maria_sibylla.html
http://home.wtal.de/hh/merian/meng.htm

New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art. Timeline of Art History - Albrecht Dürer
http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/durr/hd_durr.htm
Paris, Web Museum. Albrecht Dürer
http://www.ibiblio.org/wm/paint/auth/durer/

Other resources on Albrect Dürer as both painter and printmaker:
http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/durer_albrecht.html
http://www.artchive.com/artchive/D/durer.html
http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/bio/d/durer/biograph.html
http://www.geocities.com/eleonoreweil/durerus/den/index.html
http://www.ibiblio.org/wm/paint/auth/durer/engravings/

New York, Museum of Modern Art. What is a Print?
http://www.moma.org/exhibitions/2001/whatisaprint/flash.html

Some other artists and cultures to consider in relationship to careful observation:
Jan Van Eyck, John James Audubon, Karl Bodmer, George Catlin, Dutch still life, Rachel Ruysch, Richard Estes, Dorothea Lange, Margaret Bourke White, Egyptian tomb painting

The following websites contain other appropriate units of instruction that can expand, extend, or support big ideas presented in this lesson:
Winslow Homer
http://www.nga.gov/kids/homerscoop.pdf
Analyzing Photographs-From Theory to Practice
http://www.artsedge.kennedy-center.org./content/3901/
Lewis and Clark: Artful Recordings
http://www.artsedge.kennedy-center.org./content/3786/
Easy Printmaking in the Classroom
http://www.princetonol.com/groups/iad/lessons/elem/PrintmakingIdeas.html
Underground Garden
(Type the title of the lesson into the "keyword search box" on the index page)
http://www.crayola.com/educators/lesson_plans/index.cfm

Art Materials:
drawing pencils
colored pencils
8" x 10" white paper - one sheet per student
5" x 7" drawing paper - 4 sheets per student
colored construction paper
5" x 7" pieces of cardboard or poster board
water soluble printing ink
glue sticks and liquid glue
cotton string
ink rollers

 

LESSON 2.

Lesson Sub-Theme: Some artists represent the world in order to express an idea or opinion.

Goals and Outcomes:
Students will analyze the visual characteristics of works of art and consider how artists manipulate imagery to create meaning.
Students will consider how artists use subject matter and symbols to create meaning.
Students will create an image to convey a point of view.

Key Questions:
How does an artist make choices about what they are going to say in their works?
What medium has the artist used for his/her work? How does that affect the look of the work? What tools would the artist use for this medium?
What is the artist trying to tell us about the objects or people?
How has the artist conveyed his/her own opinion in the work?

Key Works of Art:
Nebraska Masterpieces: (Click on Reproduction for a printable version.)
Kent Bellows, Over the Mermaid Lounge

Zig Jackson, City Hall, San Francisco, CA 1997, from Jackson's "Entering Zig's Indian Reservation" series.

Larry Ferguson, Iceberg, Anarctica

Patrick Nagatani, Contaminated Radioactive Sediment, Mortandad Canyon, Los Alamos National Laboratory, 1990-93.

Andy Goldsworthy, photographs of various works made in nature.
choose several of the works made in nature.

Lesson Narrative:
Teacher Preparation: Visit the websites listed under Key Works of Art. Print out copies of the images to use in your classroom. Make one set of images for each small group (4 or 5 in a group) with the title identifying each image.

Teacher Presentation: Introduce Kent Bellows self-portrait using the Nebraska Masterpieces poster . Use the Study this Work of Art section from the back of the poster paying particular attention to the questions:
Kent Bellows is known for his skill in drawing. What do you see in the work that would make someone say this? What different kinds of textures can you observe? What objects look close to you and what objects look farther away?
What makes this art work different from a photograph?

Now look at Larry Ferguson's photograph, Iceberg, Anarctica .
What do you see in this work? Is there any real object represented? Is it represented realistically or is it more abstract?
Why do you think people want to go to Antarctica? How would you describe the environment and natural life of this place?
What happens to the world if all the icebergs melt?
What do you think Ferguson wants you to think about as you look at his photograph?

Small Group Discussion: Divide the students into small groups and give each a set of the images by Zig Jackson, Patrick Nagatani and Andy Goldsworthy. Take a look at these photographs and discuss the following questions:
What is the work of art - the photograph or the image photographed?
What is this work about?
Do you think the artist is trying to express his own opinion?

Whole Group Discussion and Student Presentation: Have the groups report out about what they discussed. Raise the following questions as they report out:
Zig Jackson, City Hall, San Francisco, CA 1997, from Jackson's "Entering Zig's Indian Reservation" series.
Zig Jackson is a Native American artist who raises issues about how Native Americans have been treated. What is an Indian Reservation?
Why would Zig Jackson put an Indian Reservation in front of the San Francisco City Hall? What issues do you think he is raising and what do you think he wants to express to you?

Patrick Nagatani, Contaminated Radioactive Sediment, Mortandad Canyon, Los Alamos National Laboratory, 1990-93.
Does anyone know what happened in Los Alamos in the 1940's?
Los Alamos was where the atom bomb was invented. What do you see here that might relate to the atom bomb or atomic energy?
Mortandad Canyon is an area rich in uranium, a radioactive mineral used in the production of nuclear weapons. It has also been a dumping site for liquid waste from the Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory. What might Nagatani be saying about this?
This is not a simple photograph. Nagatani has changed the image to send his message. He has hand colored it and used superimposed images - one image placed over another. By doing this he creates a beautiful, yet disturbing message. There may be one other reference he is making here as well. Nagatani is a Japanese American artist. How is Los Alamos connected to Japan?
The first atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan, by the United States during World War II in 1945.

Nagatani has manipulated his image. Did Zig Jackson manipulate his in any way?
He manipulated the image that he photographed rather than manipulating the photograph itself. He added the Indian Reservation sign.

Andy Goldsworthy, photographs of various works made in nature.
What do you think is the art work here - the photographs or what Goldsworthy does in nature?
Andy Goldsworthy makes sculptures out of natural objects and then leaves them to return to their natural state. Why would he do this?
Do you think he has a message to send?

Individual Art Making Task: Find a realistic image of an endangered animal. Create a setting for the animal using either collage, or collage and markers. How can you create a setting that says something about the problems facing this animal? How can you express what you think about what is happening to this animal?

Alternate Small Group Art Making Task: Working in small groups go outside and create a sculpture out of natural objects, leaves, sticks, rocks, etc. You might also consider using other kinds of objects (like trash) to make a statement about the environment. Using digital cameras, photograph your sculpture.

Written Statement: Write about your work and what you meant to express with your art work.

Instructional Strategies:
Teacher presentation.
Small and Large group discussion.
Student Presentation
Individual or Small Group Art Making Task
Writing Task

Interdisciplinary Linkages:
Science - Endangered species ­ ecology.

Assessment Strategies:
Formative Assessment - Teacher observation and check for understanding during discussions.
Summative Assessment - Have the students expressed an opinion through their work of art? Have they conveyed this opinion successfully in their written statement?

Resources and materials:
Cass Sculpture Foundation. "Andy Goldsworthy."
http://www.sculpture.org.uk/biography/AndyGoldsworthy
New York, NY. Haines Gallery. "Andy Goldsworthy."
http://www.hainesgallery.com/Main_Pages/Artist_Pages/AGOL.work.html
Other resources for Andy Goldsworthy:
http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/goldsworthy_andy.html
http://www.arthistory.sbc.edu/artartists/photoandy.html
http://www.artnet.com/artist/7145/andy-goldsworthy.html
http://www.sculpture.org.uk/image/504816331403
http://www.sheepfolds.org/html/info/info00.htm

Chicago, IL. Columbia College, Museum of Contemporary Photography. "Patrick Nagatani."
http://www.mocp.org/collections/permanent/nagatani_patrick.php
Los Angeles, CA, S K Josefsberg Studio. "Patrick Nagatani."
http://www.skjstudio.com/nagatani/contaminated.html
Other resources for Patrick Nagatani:
http://www.andrewsmithgallery.com/exhibitions/patricknagatani/
http://www.tfaoi.com/aa/2aa/2aa234.htm
http://www.museumofnewmexico.org/mfa/ideaphotographic/artists_nagatani.html
http://www.myhero.com/myhero/hero.asp?hero=Nagatani_california_06


Washington, D. C.., The Library of Congress, "Zig Jackson Is First Contemporary Native American Photographer Represented at the Library of Congress," May 11, 2005. http://www.loc.gov/today/pr/2005/05-098.html
Other resources for Zig Jackson:
http://www.andrewsmithgallery.com/exhibitions/zigjackson/zigpress.html
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A24776-2004Sep15.html
http://www.kathleenewinggallery.com/shows/nativeamericanart.html

Other artists to consider in connection with expressing ideas, opinions, moods and stories in art:
Georgia O'Keefe, Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Karl Bodmer, George Catlin, Aurther Amiotte, Nam Jun Paik, Duane Hanson, Claus Oldenberg, George Segal, Andy Warhol, Japanese scroll painting

The following websites contain other appropriate units of instruction that can expand, extend, or support big ideas presented in this lesson:
Georgia O'Keeffe
http://www.nga.gov/kids/scoop-okeeffe.pdf
Sky and Artist
http://www.artsedge.kennedy-center.org./content/2366/
Weather or Not
(Type the title of the lesson into the "keyword search box" on the index page)
http://www.crayola.com/educators/lesson_plans/index.cfm

Art Materials:
For Collage:
12" x 18" white drawing paper
markers
magazines
glue
For outdoor sculpture:
digital cameras

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