You are on page 1of 11


Evaluation of Drawing from Within Teaching Lesson

Ana L. Rincon
California State University Monterey Bay

IST520 Learning Theories

Professor Nancy Lockwood
February 25, 2014



Many people who consider themselves non-artistic seem to be very frightened at the idea
of attempting to draw or create any art piece. I often hear people say they believe that artistic
talents are innate and that if they werent born with the artistic eye and the special skill with their
hands, they will never be able to become artists. Other people believe that anyone can create art
if they apply themselves to it and develop their skills (
The course Drawing from Within is designed to teach a basic introduction of drawing tools
and techniques to create a final piece within a period of two hours. This course is optimized in
such a way that the learner can take in a lot of information in a short period of time, and develop
drawing skills that show short-term results.
In that two-hour period, learners have an opportunity to discuss a variety of subjects including:

Individual background, knowledge and understanding of art

Lecture on mindful observation, how the light particles reflect on items and define depth
and volume.

A list of the drawing tools with exercises to practice these tools. The exercises involve
creating shapes to depict depth, shadow, color mixtures, and three-dimensional shapes.

Once the basics have been covered, learners embark on their final project for the last 45
minutes, during which the learner is able to create a piece based on a photo selected from
a large set of images provided for reference.


Students are presented with relaxing and ambiance music with inspirational tones and they listen
to this music while they complete their final piece. The results are usually a pleasant surprise to
the learner and they leave the class feeling inspired and proud of their creations.
There is a need for a class that condenses the basics of drawing in order to allow the learner to
see an immediate result of her efforts within a couple of hours. This is the opportunity the learner
has to discover that they too can be artists even if they thought they couldnt be.
In his article, Thomas A. Hatfield highlights the importance of the integration of various
components of art to provide a more complete understanding of art. (Hatfield, 1986). When the
art subject is presented from different angles, the learner has a higher possibility of
understanding the instruction because it is presented in different ways, and one of them just may
speak the learners language.
The structure of this class is set up in a very efficient manner to maximize the learning potential
with various external modeling and audiovisual stimuli, as well as metacognitive notions of color
and design choices, perspective and depth through lecture and demonstrations.
This class is the answer to the needs of the many so-called non-artistic people, who secretly
wish to explore their artistic talents but do not find the courage or motivation to follow through,
due to their self-judgment or low self-efficacy levels of operation (Gredler, 2009). The zone of
proximal development is stretched when the learners move away from teacher dependency and
begin to create their own imagery without looking at the instructors demonstration, who are
usually intimidated by the concept of art and do not consider themselves capable of creating art.
This two-hour session is like an instant gratification art class.
Processes and Procedures


This class was designed while teaching a Photography class at Miraval Resorts (insert reference
link here). The situation there was simple and uncomplicated: Guests sign up for a class of
choice while they stay at the resort. There was a basic structure laid out for the pace and rhythm
of the class, however it evolved as the learners provided feedback on their experience. For
example, music was originally playing from the beginning of the class during lecture and
demonstration time, however after feedback received from the learner, the music was turned off
during lecture and began only at the time of the final drawing.
Instruction, Educational Objectives, Target Audience, Learning Environment, Activities

The instruction is a lesson on how to draw with charcoals or pastels.

The educational objectives are:

Through lecture understand the properties of light and how a three dimensional
image is formed.

To learn the three primary colors and the secondary colors.

To learn how to mix colors to create new colors.

To learn the difference between pencil, charcoal, pastels, conte, and colored

Understand the concept of light and shadow

Understand perspective and depth

Landscape and still life discussions, art critique

Practice various exercises to learn certain shapes and shading techniques

Create a final drawing piece based on a photograph or based on the learners

imagination, utilizing the skills learning during lecture and exercises


The target audience
This class is designed for any individual who would like to learn the basics of drawing and has
no prior experience. It applies to both children and adults, however so far the class has only been
implemented with adult learners.
The learning environment is a classroom with plenty of light (preferably natural light) and long
tables with a flat surface. There is enough room for learners to use a large drawing pad and set up
their drawing tools on the sides of their drawing area. There is a sink and special cleaning
supplies for artists and large trash receptacles to handle waste.
The activities of the observed class include art discussion, lecture, exercises, and a final
drawing. There is a final discussion after the completed pieces and learners have an opportunity
to do a critique session, share their personal experience, and embellish on their piece. The
feedback has always been very positive, with learners stating that this was a transformational
experience for them, where they discovered hidden talents and were even able to release some
emotional energy through the drawing process. This was a testament to the success of the class in
its design, which seemed to reach a large number of personalities and speak their language.
Young Woon Lee states in his article, Relationship Between Spirituality Types and Learning
Styles, that there are four major learning styles: the Imaginative Learners (based on a concrete
and reflective approach), the Analytic Learners (abstract and reflective), Common Senes
Learners (abstract and active), and the Dynamic Learners (concrete and active). (Woon Lee, Y.
Spirituality Types and Learning Styles). Learners feedback about this class has always been
positive and indicates that it appeals to all four of the learners types.
Learning Theories


One of the learning theories used in this class is the Social-Cognitive Theory Imitative Learning.
(Gredler, 2009) It is applied by demonstrating the drawing technique being taught while the
learner is doing the exercise and/or the final drawing. Watching the instructor as they draw is a
reinforcing activity that gives the learner a sense of security and structure to follow.
Another learning theory featured in this class is Vygotskys zone of proximal development, as
the learners are encouraged to achieve more than what they are guided to do with the instruction
( Basic guidelines are provided along with
samples that are drawn as demonstration. Then, learners have an opportunity to expand and use
their imagination and creativity to stretch farther than the knowledge that has been provided to
Representative Theorists
The representative theorists associated with the class are predominantly Bandura and Vyogtsky.
Albert Banduras Social-Cognitive Theory expands and elaborates on the subject of human
modeling and how much more effective it is to design instruction He discusses observational
learning in this interview. Vygotsky discusses the zone of proximal development, he explains
how motivation also plays a major role in the pursuit of learning objectives. The drawing class is
aided by inspirational music that fills the room and helps the learners achieve a relaxed state of
mind in a semi-meditative state, allowing them to let the creativity flow without much worry.
The role of the Teacher/Instructor
The role of the teacher/instructor in this scenario is to mediate a discussion table, introduce
technical knowledge about the drawing tools, offer a lecture on color theory, shading,
perspective, depth, and several other topics. Then the instructor begins to draw examples for the


learners to follow as they watch. The same is done when the class begins to work on their final
piece, along with the instructor who is drawing while talking and monitoring the students
progress and answering questions. This, once again, is the modeling behavior that Bandura talks
Here is a video of a pastels drawing instructor online. Notice how helpful it is to follow what she
is talking about while we have immediate visual queues of the process she is describing.
Strengths and Weaknesses
The strengths of this theory are that one can see immediate results as to whether it worked or not.
People emulating a behavior that is being modeled is proof that it is an effective learning theory.
The weakness is whether the learning becomes dependent on the model or the learner truly
moves on to performing the learned task independently.
Banduras Bobo Doll experiment shows that children repeat the actions they see modeled before
them, whether they are morally right or wrong.
this effect on human modeling can have a positive or a negative influence.
Why These Theories are Appropriate
The Vygotzkys theory is appropriate because the zone of proximal development is an important
threshold to push during the art exercises and practices. Once the learners feel confident with the
tools, and have released the fear of being wrong, they give themselves permission to try new
things and experiment with their tools, shapes, and color combinations. In this way they are able
to reach new heights with their drawing abilities and skills.


The Banduras theory is appropriate, particularly for a drawing class, because of the visual nature
of the activity, and the visual cues and reinforcements that the learner gets when attempting to
draw their pieces and following the example of the instructor at the same time, to use as
Art Therapy
Over the years, Drawing from Within has also proven to be therapeutic for many of the learners.
Many occasions learners have experienced significant shifts in their emotional well-being during
and after one class. In their article, Lili De Petrillo, and Ellen Winner conduct a study on the
effects that creating a work of art make on people. Both of their studies conclude that they
demonstrate that the act of creating a work of art makes people feel more positive in their mood,
and, hence, elevates their measure of mood valence.(De Petrillo, Winner, 2005).
I have personally seen the therapeutic effects that art can have on the learner, as I have witnessed
many of them have emotional, and what they may call spiritual experiences during their drawing
session listening to music. People claim to release many negative feelings and fears, unprocessed
grief and sadness, and often claim to feel much better afterwards.
Recommended Solutions
The recommended solution to the dilemma of a need for a drawing class that it is made
accessible in various community centers, local art centers, and other instructional facilities,
where people may take the classes without feeling too much pressure to perform. It is
recommended that these classes are continuously evolving to reflect the needs and preferences of
the learners, in order to create an ever improving creative atmosphere.


Both Vygotzky and Banduras learning theories apply to the Drawing from Within class for the
following reasons: Vygotzkys zone of proximal development is encouraged by offering the
learner a safe and consistent platform to work with at first, doing the exercises that are modeled
by the instructor. Then, during the final drawing time, the learner is able to experiment freely,
encouraged and motivated by music, and creates new and unexpected shapes and colors that
come from an internal source of motivation and inspiration. Independently, the learner has
reached higher levels of achievement without the instructor.
Banduras modeling behavior as well as motivating factors for learning all apply here in the
Drawing from Within class. The discussion table allows for social interaction and break down of
barriers or insecurities, or fears, about doing art. Then, through modeling and demonstrations, art
students are able to follow instructions confidently with visual queues and direction. Once the
learner is feeling more comfortable with their knowledge and the tools, the learner proceeds to
create their own piece without much direction.
The combination of discussion, tools, design principles, perspective and three dimensionality,
practice exercises, and final project make this two-hour class an approachable, manageable class
for all kinds of learners with or without experience. The class is designed to break down the
stereotypes and fears that many people have built within themselves believing that they will
never be creative or artistic.
From intellectual conversations about art, practical discussions and exercises about the drawing
tools and design elements, to the final personal drawing session with background music which
stimulate the senses and emotional parts of the brain, which in turn create the happy feeling


that counteracts feelings of depression, and consequently the result of the class is a very relaxing
but at the same time euphoric experience where a beautiful piece of art is the result of the hard
work of two hours.
This class applies both Bandura and Vyogtzkys learning theories.
It is recommended that Drawing from Within (or a similar class) be made available in as many
community places as possible, especially places for seniors that need physical and emotional
support and healing.
Art classes can also be Art therapy and it is currently used in many places as such.




Gredler, Margaret E, (2009). Learning and Instruction Theory into Practice.

Woon Lee, Y. Relationship Between Spirituality Types and Learning Styles Spirituality Types
and Learning Styles -87
De Petrillo, L., Winner, E. (2005), Does Art Improve Mood? A Test of aKey Assumption
underlying Art Therapy. Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association
22 (4) pp. 205-212@AAIA, Inc.
Hatfield, T. (1986), Who Teaches Art? What is Learned? Heldref Publications, Arts Education
Policy ReviewMay 2007, Vol 108 Issue 5, p7-8. 2p.
Banduras Social Cognitive Theory: An Introduction