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Development Strategies

Arts Tasks in This Report

Exercise Two From the Interior Space Task

After students have had an opportunity to think about parts of the Lawrence work, they are asked to think about how different parts of the artwork work together to convey meaning.

Notice that familiar art element terms like line, shape, and color do not appear here. Members of the Arts Assessment Development Committee were interested in exploring a variety of ways of asking students to respond to artworks, a goal encouraged by the arts framework.

View painting 1 and painting 2

Painting 1 is called In a Free Government, the Security of Civil Rights Must be the Same as that for Religious... Notice how even though the painting shows a private interior space in a home, there are many political symbols and images in the work that give us clues about what Lawrence may have wanted to express in this work.

Study the painting and think about what it is called. Write a brief essay in which you discuss what you think Lawrence may have been trying to communicate in this work. Talk about specific visual features you see in the work to support your answer.

Scoring Guide

4 - EXTENSIVE The student provides a perceptive, thorough interpretation of the work. Political symbols and/or the relevance of the title to the painting's meaning are addressed. Specific references to the work are substantive and support the student's interpretation. [Sample Response]

3 - ESSENTIAL The student offers a general interpretation of the work. The discussion is abstract and makes a few specific references to the work. The student may or may not address the title. [Sample Response]

2 - PARTIAL The student offers a sparse interpretation, which may or may not make reference to the work. [Sample Response]

1 - UNACCEPTABLE The student fails to discuss an interpretation of the work.

Addendum to the Scoring Guide

Student references to the work often include

  • the eagle in the window
  • the red, white, and blue color scheme
  • the man holds a newspaper, or some paper that features a drawing of a political monument/building
  • the toolbox under the chair possibly signifies industry and self-reliance

NEXT: Exercise Three From the Interior Space Task


Last updated 7 March 2003 (HM)

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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education