NIU sponsors art classes

By Laura L. Hayes

The NIU chapter of the National Art Education Association is sponsoring Saturday art classes for children ages 6-14.

The first class began Sept. 5. The classes will end on Oct. 10.

Each week, the classes are taught by students in the art education department. A team of students will teach for two weeks. Each team teaches a different age group. Children are separated into age groups of 6-7, 8-9, 10-11 and 12-14.

The teaching is part of art education teachers’ required hours in the visual arts department, said Caroline Allrutz, professor of art education and supervisor of the classes.

The theme for the classes is “Travel Through Art Across Time,” said Chairman of Art Education David McKay. Allrutz said the theme is “based on the Binney & Smith Crayola Dream-Makers 5 program which emphasizes the value of art and art-based activities throughout children’s learning experiences.”

The six- to seven-year-old class, taught by art education students Jennifer Barnacle, Vikki Martin and Kristie Norton, has a sub-theme “Travel Through Space.” In this class, the children are making a two-dimensional texture collage.

The eight- to nine-year-old class, taught by art education students, Jennifer Alterio, Brenda Bonifas and Sarah Schlueter, has a sub-theme “Travel Through Art.” The class focused on artist Georgia 0’Keefe last week and children made paintings of places they had been, imitating the style of Georgia 0’Keefe.

The 10-11 year-old class, taught by art education students Heidi Blickle and Eric Kristoffersen focused on facial collages. Students either made the collage from polaroids of themselves or they painted the collage. The sub-theme was “Portraits Through Time.”

Art education students John Epple and Bridget Doherty taught the 12-14 year-old class. The sub-theme for this was “Travel through Native American art.” Students either made their own good luck shields or painted shields that already had been made. Doherty said that this helped children to gain a “good multi-cultural experience through the arts.”

The classes are beneficial for both teachers and students, said Brenda Bonifas. “The classes give both students and future teachers experience.” Schlueter added that the classes are very beneficial for art education students because it allows them to get their feet wet and to see what they have planned in action.