Elementary School Art Program Ikego Elementary School, a DoD School, Yokosuka, Japan.
“You can not draw – what you do not notice.” –Marvin Bartel
Identified the need for an art program at my son's school within the DoDDS Ikego Elementary School, Yokosuka, Japan. With cooperation of the principal and 15 different teachers, I partnered with a colleague who had an elementary education background. We developed, proposed, and implemented an art program complete with 6 lesson plans for each of the 260 students, three classes of each grade, grades K – 3. Instead of budding artists, we wanted to guide Art Explorers. Every class was an exploration through a jungle of visual stimulation. We taught our Art Explorers about contour lines, shapes, patterns, colors, composition, proportion, texture and most of all ... SEEING. The year ended with a school art show to showcase every child's artwork. Each grade level rotated in for a ninety-minute session once a month to receive art instruction and create wonderful artwork. The year ended with a school art show to showcase every child's artwork. We promoted the program within the community through the use of printed flyers and email. The school was able to provide a limited amount of supplies for the program, so we obtained donations from the community, which helped off set some of the supply costs. The volunteer art program filled a huge need at the school, saving the Pacific Department of Defense Dependents Schools literally tens of thousands of dollars in staffing a regular art teacher at the school for this purpose. We each received the DoDEA Volunteers Award from DoDDS CFAY, Japan for my art program and work with the school and students.