Setting and Context - Beattie
The School Community
Beattie Elementary School is located in Fort Collins, Colorado. It is part of the Poudre school system, which has an enrollment of 24,508 students. Beattie is one of thirty one elementary schools in the district. Beattie has an open school layout. This means that there are “no walls” to their classrooms. There are walls that hold up the building of course, but the classrooms are big open spaces. All of the second and third grade students share one big room, the same for fourth and fifth grade. Beattie is a school that is very close to being a title one school. The only reason they aren’t is due to the gifted and talented program that they have here. Beattie was one of the first elementary schools in Fort Collins to have a gifted and talented program and is still has one of the biggest gifted and talented programs. Due to this, a lot of parents opt to bring their children to Beattie. Due to this, the student population becomes very diverse here.
Students and Classroom
The gym, art room, and music room are all built off to the side of the main building. This means that the noise from other classrooms really doesn’t reach us, which is pretty nice. We have eight large tables in the room that we move around depending on what kind of activities that we are running. For a while we set up the tables in diagonal lines which allow us to circulate through the room and get to each student with ease. Then for stations we put them together to create four big tables for students to move around. We have four big windows, which let in a whole lot of natural light throughout the day. I am a firm believer that natural light is beneficial to creating a better learning environment. The only problem is that we have white tile floor, and when the light hits the floor it reflects upwards and can blind you. In the afternoons we often have to close the blinds so that we don’t blind our students. We have lots of cabinet space all around the room, for supplies and storing of student work and supplies. We have a small hallway in the back that leads to our storage space and a small kiln that we have. We have to white boards at the front of the room and a smart board between them. At the front of the room there is a large carpet for the students to sit on and a low shelve that holds buckets full of toys and stacks of paper. The toys and paper are for free time when the students get done with a project early or before their classmates. The students’ can chose between free time and free draw which allows them to make a choice of activity or who to work with that day.
Topic and Rationale
For art class I see each grade level in two groups twice a week. I teach the kindergartners first graders and second graders. My kindergartners are still getting used to being in school. I have sixteen students in each class and about four in each class are halve day students, which means that they leave school right after art. They have worked on patterns, storytelling, and different styles of lines. In my first grade class I have 24 students in each of my classes. They have worked on creating collages, understanding basic three-dimensional vocab, and building techniques with clay. My second grade classes are my largest with 29 students in each class and a para that accompanies one of the groups. They have been working on positive/ negative space, collage work, working as a team, and three-dimensional building projects