Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Engaging the right brain

This is an idea that a fellow art teacher shared with me and I have adopted with all my classes 1 - 5.  When the students come into class, I have pencils and paper all set and ready for them to draw silently for six minutes.   I have told them that during most of their school day they are using the left side of the brain to think analytically and that we need to give the right side of their brain an opportunity to wake up so they can be more creative.  The orange cones on the tables say work zone, that is their non-verbal clue to come in and get right to work using their right brains.  The students can draw anything, realistic or abstract, as long as it is appropriate for school.  The six minutes gives me time to make any materials transitions necessary as my classes come and go back to back.  It also allows me a chance to take a breath before I begin a new lesson.   For the students it is a quiet transition time that seems to settle them better than if I tried to immediately start a lesson after they walk into the door.   This has become one of my favorite parts of each class time because I have the opportunity to see what interest them through their personal drawings.