by Laurie-Ann Copple
I've been teaching art at Master Peace Academy since January 2018. The first year I taught art history, art appreciation and certain modules that included drawings inspired by Roy Lichtenstein, Georgia O'Keefe, Mary Cassatt, Piet Mondrian, Vincent Van Gogh and more.
In 2019, we lost five of our learners, which were replaced by Sinegugu, Paula and Delivenence. Sinegugu is 8, Paula is 7, Seth is 6 and Delivenence is 5. While we normally don't have provisions for kindergarten (Grade R in South Africa), we had to take Delivenence in with his sister Paula. Delivenence has made leaps and bounds, and while he can't yet read, he knows his numbers, he's practicing with a pencil (but is more comfortable on the whiteboard), and he knows his basic colours. The others have been learning as well.
I was at a loss in how to teach these kids from the curriculum that I developed the year before. They didn't have a foundation of art elements, and certainly weren't ready for art history! So I prayed about it, and was given a dream of teaching these kids art elements like: line, shape and colour. Term 1 was spent on these elements again and again, with some practice. Term 2 was spent on drawing lines in contour drawings - and training their eyes to see the shapes behind whatever they were drawing - geometric shapes, organic shapes and three-dimensional shapes. Since I am already working on a colouring book of my own drawings, I have been sharing my progress with these learners. They are excited to see new drawings being added to the mix. Then I was inspired to do the same with THEIR drawings - if they would not colour in their line drawings, then I could strengthen their lines, and make a colouring book that they could colour in themselves.
Every week they would ask me the status of their own colouring books, but I had to wait until near the end of the term to gather them together. While the end of the term is early June, we head back to Canada on May 27th. This means their art exam is on May 21st (although Seth has already had his). Since Seth's exam is done, the girls are to have theirs next week. Delivenence is too young to have an exam, so his marks are through his colouring book, and teacher assessment.
This has been the most challenging project yet. I wonder what will be next for term 3, other than to begin work on other elements, like texture and perspective. Term 3 begins July 9th, when we are still in Canada, so we are back with the learners the following week on July 15. I will be praying for direction. But through the process, my own art is growing, and I can see some progress with these kids as well. Thank you Jesus for inspiring me to pour your creativity in these kids! Tony's doing the same in music (as well as teaching them in science).
Tony and Laurie-Ann Copple (usually Laurie-Ann)
L-A's devotional blog
TONY'S DEVOTIONAL BLOG
Tony's south african journal