Art Grades K-2
In Grades K-2, visual literacy relates to all aspects of becoming “art literate,” including an understanding of how the Elements of Art and Principles of Design are used for personal expression and communication through art. Visual literacy also encompasses the application of critical and creative thinking skills to artistic expression and solving artistic problems, as well as using a variety of tools, media, and processes safely and appropriately while creating art.
Students will understand the language of art. Young children are developing fine motor skills and are learning to manipulate various art materials and tools. Since it is the first time that some children will be correctly using many of the materials and tools, they will need to be given specific instruction. Students will begin to recognize how symbols, subjects, themes, and other commonalities among different pieces of art are used to communicate. As they create art, students recognize the Elements of Art in their own work, such as shape, color, line, and texture, and work towards explaining why they made certain decisions about their work. Their choices of subject matter reflect their own lives, and they realize that art can tell a story.
Students will use creative and critical thinking skills. Students are often given the same art assignment which may have specific guidelines, but which is open-ended in terms of artistic choices. They learn that there are multiple solutions and are challenged to reach original solutions by drawing upon their senses and their environment. Rather than copying images or symbols, students come up with their own ideas and use their imaginations for subject matter.
Students use a variety of tools, media, and processes (e.g. drawing, painting, weaving, printing, stitchery, collage, mixed media, sculpture, and ceramics) safely and appropriately when creating art. Students use art materials safely and take care of tools and materials, such as putting lids back on paints, washing brushes correctly, and closing lids on markers. They learn which media to use for art projects, the processes for using the media, and how to manipulate the media.
Art Grades 3 & 4
In grades 3-4, specific terminology to discuss their works of art, as well as works of art throughout history and different art movements are introduced. Students will use such terms such as cubism, photo-realism, foreground, and proportion. Students begin to express their own ideas in art using experiences that only they have had, reflecting their own personal perspectives of the world in which they live. Students will understand different voices in art, and they will also understand differences in works of the masters and determine the differences between realistic and non-objective art. Students’ knowledge of the elements and principles expands, and they can accurately depict different types of lines and correlate groups of colors with the moods of works of art. They will demonstrate the ability to compose a picture effectively incorporating the Principles of Design.