Teacher Uses Art to Make Classes Interesting

April 29, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. come up with 
[kuhm uhp] (v. phrase) – to discover or think of an idea
Example: The student came up with the solution after reading some textbooks.

2. stimulating [stim-yuh-ley-ting] (adj.) – encouraging or inspiring
Example: The stimulating environment helped the students feel lively during class.

3. ambiance [am-bee-uh ns] (n.) – the mood or atmosphere in a specific place
Example: Colorful chairs and tables create a happy and lively ambiance in the restaurant.

4. stand out [stand-out] (v. phrase) – to be obvious or noticeable
Example: The woman’s colorful dress stands out in the crowd.

5. critical thinking [KRIT-i-kuh l THING-king] (n.) – the ability to think logically or in an organized manner
Example: Professors teach critical thinking to aid students solve problems.

Read the text below.

A French high school teacher in Maryland, USA came up with an artistic way to make learning more interesting and fun for students.

Ryan Martinez, who teaches at Walter Johnson High School, said that the classroom mirrors the teaching style of an educator. So, he used his artistic skills and painted the ceiling tiles of his classroom to make a stimulating atmosphere and to encourage his students to have fun while learning.

This creative project started a year ago when Martinez brought home a tile and painted it with blue. After installing the blue tile, the students saw it immediately as it stood out from the rest of the white tiles.

Every weekend, Martinez spends 10 hours to paint other ceiling tiles of his classroom. But aside from his classroom, he also paints for other parts of the school, such as the math classroom. Martinez’s co-teacher Maggie Mesorly believes that colors can boost the students’ critical thinking and creativity in problem solving.

Martinez also encourages students to help paint ceiling tiles during their break so they can feel more involved. According to some students, painting boosts their confidence and gives them new fun experiences.

The French teacher also goes to Inwood House, a nursing home for adults with disabilities, to brighten up their ceilings, which in turn lightens up their rooms’ ambiance. Inwood House manager Meg Marshall commented that seeing the artworks on the ceiling make the residents feel much better.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         If you were Martinez’s student, would you like his teaching style of using art in class? Why or why not?
·         What do you think is the most effective way of teaching?

Discussion B

·         Aside from art, how else can teachers make their lessons interesting and fun for their students?
·         How do you think students can help themselves become more eager and interested in studying?


April 29, 2013