In her book Studio Thinking 2 (Teachers College Press, 2013), Lois Hetland describes the importance of understanding how the studio classroom works and creating a studio culture. She explains that studio classrooms have a “look and feel” that is different from other educational classrooms. Additionally, she talks about the importance of organization; especially when many individuals are sharing space, supplies, tools, and equipment. An effective art teacher needs to promote good student practice: attention to the care of the studio and all of its resources. It is difficult to create in an atmosphere of confusion and disorder. Missing supplies, dirty equipment, and broken tools can actually impede the creative process. All users need to be respectful of the studio and its resources for effective experimentation and learning to occur.
It is important for all students to know the location of materials, tools, and
equipment. This page is provided to familiarize yourself with the studio and how it functions. To get an idea of the importance of studio maintenance please view this important and thought-provoking video by going to the “Ten Bullets” film clip by Tom Sachs. After viewing this video consider the following questions: Why keep the studio classroom clean? Whose responsibility is it to keep the studio classroom organized? Is there a relationship between organization and safety? How does the design of the studio classroom shape curriculum? Conversely, how does curriculum shape the design of the studio classroom?
Art Education Studio
The D-Wing houses the art education area. D102 is the main studio classroom. It is divided into two large areas by a curtain wall that can be opened and closed depending on need. The classroom has state-of-the-art technology. Dual screen projection ensures that all students see the images presented; the system is controlled by a SmartBoard. Internet access is provided at the podium and WiFi is available for student use throughout the wing. A document camera and DVD player are also integrated into the media center. The “media wall” is also a white board and surround sound provides for a fully integrated viewing experience. Laptop computers (MAC and PC), and video and digital cameras are housed in the area and available for students to document teaching and learning.
The mult-purpose studio consists of six large woodblock work tables and stools. Overhead, drawdown outlets provide for safe access to electricity. The studio houses three four-harness table looms, two floor looms, two presses, six pottery wheels, two kilns and materials and tools for drawing, painting, printmaking, fibers, sculpture, photography, ceramics and electronic art. Two storage areas, a kiln room and student lounge with a microwave and refrigerator are located off of the multi-purpose studio.
A large conference/resource room accommodates small group instruction. AV materials, texts, and periodicals, including: Visual Arts Research, Studies in Art Education, Art Education, NAEA News, CAEA Collage, Art in America, Raw Vision, School Arts and Art & Activities.
In addition to organization, safety in the studio classroom must be adequately understood and practiced by its users. The following presentations are based on material from Safety in the Artroom (revised) by Charles Qualley. This material should be carefully reviewed. Appropriate safety practice is an expectation for all users of the art education studio. The following topics are covered: Safety Hazards, Safety Precautions and Protection, Initiating Corrective Actions, Curriculum and Safety, and Legal Liability Issues.
K-12 Art Studio (PowerPoint)
Safety Hazards: Safety Hazards
Safety Precautions and Protection: Safety Precautions and Protection
Initiating Corrective Actions: Initiating Corrective Actions
Curriculum and Safety: Curriculum and Safety in the Artroom
Legal Liabilty Issues: Legal Liability Issues
Working in the Studio
(aka “know the code” or “guidelines to becoming a good art teacher, earning an excellent grade and an A+ letter of recommendation”). This list of guidelines to help you to understand how to take initiative and think for yourself about how to be an excellent studio citizen:
1. The Studio is Sacred Space. “All respect should be given to people completing a task.” During class time all students are completing a task at all times.
2. Work surfaces are for working. Not for storing your work. All work surfaces must be kept clean at all times.
3. Be On Time. Be on time to class. Work in a focused manner throughout the class period. Class time is precious. When you come to class be prepared. You should have all assignments and materials with you that you need to work, learn or teach. This also means you will need to be prepared or set-up BEFORE class begins.
4. Clean up. Always clean up after yourself. When you have finished a project or teaching a lesson put away all tools, and leave your workspace cleaner than you found it. Your peers and students, when appropriate, should assist you at this task (they made the mess—although you are responsible for it when you are teaching). All supplies and projects should be stored. Nothing is to be left out on tables, counters, on the floor, etc. Close all drawers, cabinet doors, etc. Place all chairs on the table and sweep and mop after the last activity of the day.
5. Don’t pass the buck. You are responsible for maintaining the quality of the studio environment. If a mess is left by another class or person clean it up. If cabinets and drawers are open, close them or if the studio door is left unlocked, lock it up. If a mess is left or you notice another code violation by one of your classmates fix it. When you are fed up because your classmate is a slob report it to the faculty.
6. Lock Up. After hours the studio door should always be locked. Do not let anyone in the studio that you do not know!
7. Creativity is the Enemy. When used to mask ignorance. If you don’t know how to do something, understand how materials work, or use a piece of equipment—ask. It’s that easy. Trying to teaching someone how to do something when you haven’t done it yourself is VERY FRUSTRATING FOR THE LEARNER.
8. Everything has a home. Put back equipment, supplies and projects where you found them. Refer to the maps and labeling if you forget where you acquired things. It’s frustrating to “hunt” things down and, simply speaking, wastes everyone’s precious time.
Below is the video manual available for students to view. It provides all the information about the materials and equipment in the art education studio. Students are expected to review these videos and take and pass an exam on this information before using the studio.
Studio Manual: Studio Overview
Studio Manual: Where to Find Materials
Studio Manual: Resource Room
Studio Manual: Clean Up
Studio Manual: Safety Information
Studio Manual: How to Use the Printing Press