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National Visual Arts Standards
Grades 9 - 12

In grades 9-12, students extend their study of the visual arts. They continue to use a wide range of subject matter, symbols, meaningful images, and visual expressions. They grow more sophisticated in their employment of the visual arts to reflect their feelings and emotions and continue to expand their abilities to evaluate the merits of their efforts. These standards provide a framework for that study in a way that promotes the maturing students' thinking, working, communicating, reasoning, and investigating skills. The standards also provide for their growing familiarity with the ideas, concepts, issues, dilemmas, and knowledge important in the visual arts. As students gain this knowledge and these skills, they gain in their ability to apply knowledge and skills in the visual arts to their widening personal worlds.

The visual arts range from the folk arts, drawing, and painting, to sculpture and design, from architecture to film and video--and any of these can be used to help students meet the educational goals embodied in these standards. For example, graphic design (or any other field within the visual arts) can be used as the basis for creative activity, historical and cultural investigations, or analysis throughout the standards. The visual arts involve varied tools, techniques, and processes--all of which also provide opportunities for working toward the standards. It is the responsibility of practitioners to choose from among the array of possibilities offered by the visual arts to accomplish specific educational objectives in specific circumstances.

To meet the standards, students must learn vocabularies and concepts associated with various types of work in the visual arts. As they develop greater fluency in communicating in visual, oral, and written form, they must exhibit greater artistic competence through all of these avenues.

In grades 9-12, students develop deeper and more profound works of visual art that reflect the maturation of their creative and problem-solving skills. Students understand the multifaceted interplay of different media, styles, forms, techniques, and processes in the creation of their work.

Students develop increasing abilities to pose insightful questions about contexts, processes, and criteria for evaluation. They use these questions to examine works in light of various analytical methods and to express sophisticated ideas about visual relationships using precise terminology. They can evaluate artistic character and aesthetic qualities in works of art, nature, and human-made environments. They can reflect on the nature of human
involvement in art as a viewer, creator, and participant.

Students understand the relationships among art forms and between their own work and that of others. They are able to relate understandings about the historical and cultural contexts of art to situations in contemporary life. They have a broad and in-depth understanding of the meaning and import of the visual world in which they live.

1. CONTENTS STANDARD:
Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS PROFICIENT: STUDENTS

a. apply media, techniques, and processes with sufficient skill, confidence, and sensitivity that their intentions are carried out in their artworks
b. conceive and create works of visual art that demonstrate an understanding of how the communication of their ideas relates to the media, techniques, and processes they use

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS ADVANCED: STUDENTS
c. communicate ideas regularly at a high level of effectiveness in at least one visual arts medium
d. initiate, define, and solve challenging visual arts problems independently using intellectual skills such as analysis, synthesis, and evaluation

2. CONTENTS STANDARD:
Using knowledge of structures and functions
ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS PROFICIENT: STUDENTS
a. demonstrate the ability to form and defend judgments about the characteristics and structures to accomplish commercial, personal, communal, or other purposes of art
b. evaluate the effectiveness of artworks in terms of organizational structures and functions
c. create artworks that use organizational principles and functions to solve specific visual arts problems

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS ADVANCED: STUDENTS
d. demonstrate the ability to compare two or more perspectives about the use of organizational principles and functions in artwork and to defend personal evaluations of
these perspectives
e. create multiple solutions to specific visual arts problems that demonstrate competence in producing effective relationships between structural choices and artistic functions

3. CONTENTS STANDARD:
Choosing and evaluating a range of subject matter, symbols and ideas
ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS PROFICIENT: STUDENTS
a. reflect on how artworks differ visually, spatially, temporally, and functionally, and describe how these are related to history and culture
b. apply subjects, symbols, and ideas in their artworks and use the skills gained to solve problems in daily life

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS ADVANCED: STUDENTS
c. describe the origins of specific images and ideas and explain why they are of value in their artwork and in the work of others
d. evaluate and defend the validity of sources for content and the manner in which subject matter, symbols, and images are used in the students' works and in significant works by
others

4. CONTENTS STANDARD:
Understanding the visual arts in relation to history and cultures
ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS PROFICIENT: STUDENTS
a. differentiate among a variety of historical and cultural contexts in terms of characteristics and purposes of works of art
b. describe the function and explore the meaning of specific art objects within varied cultures, times, and places
c. analyze relationships of works of art to one another in terms of history, aesthetics, and culture, justifying conclusions made in the analysis and using such conclusions to inform their own art making

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS ADVANCED: STUDENTS
d. analyze and interpret artworks for relationships among form, context, purposes, and critical models, showing understanding of the work of critics, historians, aestheticians, and artists
e. analyze common characteristics of visual arts evident across time and among cultural/ethnic groups to formulate analyses, evaluations, and interpretations of meaning

5. CONTENTS STANDARD:
Reflecting upon and assessing the characteristics and merits of their work and the work of others
ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS PROFICIENT: STUDENTS
a. identify intentions of those creating artworks, explore the implications of various purposes, and justify their analyses of purposes in particular works
b. describe meanings of artworks by analyzing how specific works are created and how they relate to historical and cultural contexts
c. reflect analytically on various interpretations as a means for understanding and evaluating works of visual art

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS ADVANCED: STUDENTS
d. correlate responses to works of visual art with various techniques for communicating meanings, ideas, attitudes, views, and intentions

6. CONTENTS STANDARD:
Making connections between visual arts and other disciplines
ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS PROFICIENT: STUDENTS
a. compare the materials, technologies, media, and processes of the visual arts with those of other arts disciplines as they are used in creation and types of analysis
b. compare characteristics of visual arts within a particular historical period or style with ideas, issues, or themes in the humanities or sciences

ACHIEVEMENT STANDARDS ADVANCED: STUDENTS
c. synthesize the creative and analytical principles and techniques of the visual arts and selected other arts disciplines, the humanities, or the sciences

GRADES K - 4

GRADES 5 - 8

WHAT ARE THE NATIONAL VISUAL ARTS STANDARDS?