I found the article I am sharing in the UMD database, Academic OneFile. It is written by Ryan Shin and discusses the importance of integrating digital methods of art education into the classroom. We have discussed the this issue on multiple occasions but I felt Shin shed a new light on the subject referring children of today as "digital natives." He supports this by saying they spend more time reading lines of text messages than lines from a book and spend more time on Facebook rather than reading a book. This might not be such a terrible thing, today's students are the first generation to truly grow up and learn with computers, cell-phones, video games, music and video players, and other digital technologies being readily and consistently available to them. Shin also introduces a project that can bring some these elements into the classroom called the Mystery Box Swap. The project involves students decorating the inside and outside of a box (shoebox, wood box, etc.) and then filling it with several objects that express their life experiences, such as a special moment, a person you want to remember, a life-changing experience, a vision or goal, or anything significant to the student. The students then wrote a description of the contents without giving them away so they could be posted onto an auction website (similar to eBay). The students then traded with those they were most curious about. This project uses traditional craft-like art making but also ties in a digital aspect to the lesson. It could also be used as an "ice breaking" assignment early in the semester as the students would learn more about their new classmates. The digital tools are too abundant and useful in this world to ignore as a teacher. I know we have highlighted a lot of the main arguments for this in class but the integration of digital methods is something that I feel very strongly about.
An example of a "Mystery Box"
Shin, Ryan. "Taking Digital Creativity to the Art Classroom: Mystery Box Swap." Art Education 63.2 (2010): 38. Academic OneFile. Web. 25 Oct. 2011.