In the middle of a pandemic, Fullerton College Fine Arts professors still strive to give their students the best education possible.
Carla Falb, a professor who teaches basic drawing, and William Henke, a ceramics professor, show their students of Fullerton College how much work they’ve personally put into their classes to help them along the way.
Falb explains that she sees this transition as a challenge, so in order to develop herself, she took an online teaching certification and took tips from her summer class to prepare for fall.
Both Falb and Henke start their Zoom meetings by demonstrating and teaching the first hour or so and then keeping themselves available until the end of class time for students to ask questions.
Falb also creates YouTube videos that give students the ability to watch and learn at their own pace.
The two professors agree that Zoom classes do give students a “front of the row” point of view, which not all students can get during in-person classes.
They also note that one challenge they face is not being able to guide students along the way with their artwork because they don’t see it until after it’s finished. Which means that there are times where students may have to start all over.
Another challenge students faced were getting supplies for the fall semester since several stores were closed due to COVID.
Falb and Henke tried their best to make this as easy as possible for their students.
Falb worked with local art supplies stores to build kits for her students and Henke only required a few tools, such as glaze and then the rest he tried to supply his students with.
When it comes to students turning in their finished artwork to be graded, Henke is requiring students to drop off their projects at school, but in an outdoor area, in order for the clay to be fired up and to pick up more clay as well.
Falb requires a file of the student’s drawings and a picture of the object(s) they’re drawing to be able to compare their artwork.
In order for students to be able to get a firm grasp on what they are learning, Falb breaks her class into smaller groups so that they can critique each other and Henke allows students to see other artworks when they come to drop off their next projects.
Both ways help students analyze their own projects in a developmental way.
Some advice that professor Falb gives to her art students or any students is to approach their assignments wholeheartedly and with curiosity. Students have to give themselves the motivation to want to learn.
As well as being present when they’re creating their artwork and appreciating what they’re capable of creating.
Henke stresses to read the professor’s instructions and to understand how to navigate through Canvas to make sure students don’t miss anything.
In spite of the situation at hand, Falb and Henke truly show their adaptiveness and willingness to help their students succeed.