Our visual arts program is taught by Mrs. Diana Hamberger. She writes:
“One of my earliest memories is of sitting on the floor around the coffee table with my mother and two sisters, drawing and coloring contentedly. A little later, in first grade, I remember drawing a horse in Mrs. M’s class. In my childish eyes, it looked like a real horse, running through the fields. I was hooked! From then on, when teachers or parents or others asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I said, “An artist!” And so I am. Teaching is an art in itself, and being an art teacher is one of the greatest pleasures in my life.
Part of the pleasure I take in art is that of teaching youngsters to tap into their own creativity, and take pride in their own creations. I like to tell them that there are no mistakes in art. There can be things you like or dislike about one’s creation, and then the next step is to figure out what to do about it—creatively!
I believe in integrating the arts—painting, drawing, music, drama—into every aspect of a student’s education, at least as much as is practicable. The arts tap into parts of the brain that are often ignored in the more linear and logical subjects like literacy and math, but using art as a vehicle for those same subjects can add dimensional understanding, can help struggling students see things from a different perspective, and can even help with a way of understanding that is not necessarily verbalized, but is a kind of “aha” that happens as they use the right-brain mode to create.
One of my primary goals as an art teacher is to convey to the student that art is not magic. People are not born with the ability to draw and paint. Sometimes individuals discover a way of seeing artistically early on, and with practice, develop skill and talent, but ANYONE with the will and determination, with some instruction and encouragement, can learn to draw and paint accurately and beautifully.”