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Art Unit Performance Task

In addition to incorporating multimodal literacies on a daily basis, I revised my projects to ensure there were multiple multimodal components based around choice and flexibility for students. As a culminating project for the unit about art, students completed a multi-step performance task individually consisting of the following parts:

Part 1

Students chose a visual artist from a Spanish speaking country or with heritage from a Spanish speaking country. Students completed a brief research paper in English outlining biographical information, artistic significance, and a description/analysis of one piece of artwork. This component gives students a choice is selecting an artist in which they were interested and so increases their engagement. By researching and writing first in English, students had the opportunity to focus on learning key details about the artist and express their analysis of his or her art in as much detail as possible. 

Part 2

Students wrote a gallery placard in Spanish about the artwork that they had chosen. This component required students to use key vocabulary from the unit and employ skills they had practiced during partner work and other class activities.

Part 3

Students participated in a "gallery visit" in which students took on roles as art experts and as interviewers. Interviewers asked a set of 5 questions in Spanish (written as a class and practiced in advance) and students responded in sentences in Spanish about their selected artist and the artwork on display. The interviewers then recorded their responses to the artwork and the information they had learned in a series of hashtags in Spanish on Instragram-like handouts (see below). I took on the role as Museum Security Guard, ensuring students had to look to themselves and one another for questions about language, instructions, and timing.

Part 4

Students created an original creative work (drawing, painting, song, poem, story) displaying the characteristics of the work of their chosen artist (themes, style, etc.). Through this component, students demonstrated their understanding of crucial elements of their artists’ work through creative expression in whatever mode they preferred. 
Based on Velazquez’s Las Meninas
Excerpt from rap inspired by Soraida Martinez