Kindra Fehr is the Art Specialist at Garfield School of Salt Lake City. She first reached out to ArtPlacer to create an online gallery of middle school and high school art since they were unable to have their end-of-year art exhibition due to Covid-19.
Garfield School and Visual Art Institute have had a partnership for the past 2 years. Students go from the school to the Institute one afternoon a week and they complete their art electives there. Visual Art Institute is a nonprofit after-school art program that was established in 1978. By partnering with them, through a grant provided by the Sorenson Legacy Foundation, Garfield School has been able to offer classes in oil painting, animation, photoshop, drawing, and foundations of art, in a studio setting being taught by professional artists who are also teachers.
Going virtual at Garfield
As of March 13th, they went into a distant learning model which was very challenging but got better with time. Some students excelled and for others, it was too much and they were given the option to be graded on the work up until that point. Most of Kindra’s students did not follow through with the electives as so much was being put into staying on top of their other academic work.
“At the end of the year we typically have an art exhibit and film festival to show our works from the year in all arts related electives; film, visual art, music, dance. With Covid-19, we were unable to do this and I wanted to show the students work in as much of a gallery setting as possible.”
“I started a google search and found art placer. Nicolas was kind enough to meet me on Zoom and to offer an account to develop our gallery. I’ve had great feedback from the exhibit!”
You can see the full exhibition here.
Studying from home
Kindra’s own children are ages 11 and 16. Her 11-year-old has thrived with virtual classrooms beyond what he was doing in a live environment. Her 16-year-old has done well but prefers being with other students in a classroom. She has found that it really depends on the child. Some are loving it and doing much better and others are really struggling without a real human physically there to guide them.
“I think when things go back to normal there will be a lot of hybrid learning environments to teach to all strengths.”