Course Syllabus


Instructor: Aleta Andrews, Carlmont High School



My name is Ms. Andrews and I was very recently hired to take over Ms. Hodges classes for the year.  This will be my 7th year teaching at the high school level and includes: drawing, painting, 3-D, mixed-media, and ceramics. I have a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) and love sharing my knowledge with others!  I look forward to teaching online as this will be a first for me so hang in there!  Take note, things are subject to change due to these uncertain times--I ask everyone to be patient until we work out the kinks.  Also, I am excited to meet and get to know you all!   


Course Introduction: This course is designed to give you the opportunity to create a great variety of different kinds of art. This document will communicate the class rules, procedures, grading system and projects.  We are starting the year with Distance Learning, which will be challenging, but the art will come through, and you will learn a lot!


Class rules:

  1. Attend the Zoom class meetings: your participation will comprise most of your grade. Be on time and ready to work and participate.
  2. Follow the on-line behavior policies
  3. Follow the school respect policy (outlined in the student handbook).


Class projects will be allotted usually 100 points for each.  Students are given 50 participation points a week, 10 per day. An unexcused absence will result in 0 points for that day, and a tardy will result in a 5 point daily deduction. I follow the district policy of automatic fail with 18 or more absences with 3+ cuts. Sometimes art contains images of nudity or adult themes; parents: please inform me if there is a problem with this. My students are expected to enjoy this class. Extra credit opportunities are provided throughout the year. Please make sure that you are signed onto Canvas.  


Grade Breakdown:

Participation: daily participation, attendance, class/behavioral expectations             


Online Assignments: consisting of assignments linking to various online learning platforms/forus


Product + Process: (the actual art object) understanding and fulfilling the project’s requirements, goals, and deadline given  + time, thought and effort applied.  Along with presentation and careful workmanship                                                                                                                      30%


*Sketchbooks: sketches, journal prompts, vocabulary notes, etc.                   



*Sketchbooks are a requirement!

Also known as “Visual Journaling”, sketchbooks are a wonderful process tool used by artists when thinking about and creating art!  Students will be graded on their sketchbook entries to include:  journal prompts, mixed-media, sketches or “blueprints” for projects, written exercises, note-taking, etc.  Sketchbooks make learning much more interesting and fun. In fact, many start-up companies now implement Visual Journals in their everyday life to spark fresh ideas and keep their teams interested in their work.  Your sketchbook will also serve as your textbook and drawing-book for the class and it is completely yours to have fun with. 


No larger than 11” x 14”

Perfect size:  9” x 12”

No smaller than 8” x 10”

White paper, no toned paper


On Fridays, I will often focus on art history or teaching you current art trends


  • 2-3 regular pencils
  • A sketchbook or a graph paper notebook
  • Eraser and sharpener
  • A set of color markers
  • A set of color pencils
  • A ruler
  • Scissors
  • White school glue, and 3 glue sticks
  • A set of water-colors with 2-3 brushes
  • 1 black Sharpie
  • 1-2 black waterproof pens
  • White drawing paper 12X18 (copy paper is OK, but not preferred)


A list of our on-line projects:

(projects are subject to change)


  • Create a Zen Tangle Hand Design
  • Create a Calligram, an illustrated name design where the layout of letters creates a basic image
  • Create a Summer Senses accordion booklet cataloging your summer experiences based on the 5 basic senses:  touch, sight, hearing, smell, and taste
  • Create a self-portrait collage using texts, imagery, and drawing that represents you
  • Create a Day of the Dead Decorative Skull design
  • Create a Notan Positive/Negative Space composition

Some things to keep in mind when learning how to create art:


  • Each person creates through personal expression. Don’t compare yourself to others.
  • Mistakes happen. Otherwise known as “Happy Accidents.” 
  • Be patient with yourself.
  • Remember that, like in everything else, you need to practice a lot to improve your skills.
  • Everyone has an imagination, including you.
  • This year, you WILL create art of which you will be proud. Respect what you do.
  • Creating art is not easy; it can be very challenging, so have realistic expectations.
  • Never, never, never put down your art, or others’ art.
  • Art is important.
  • Creating art makes you smarter by developing new neural networks in your brain, teaching you to think sequentially, and teaching you to create a concrete object out of an abstract idea. It’s good for you.
  • Be authentic! 
  • Remember that even artistic geniuses like Picasso, Rembrandt, and DaVinci had trash cans full of their mistakes after a day at the studio.
  • If you are making mistakes, you are in the process.
  • Let yourself be real and enjoy yourself. If you are patient, you will find what you are good at.
  • All of us are born artists.
  • Remember that once you have created a new piece of art there now exists on the planet something that didn’t exist before.
  • Just because something is fun, doesn’t mean it isn’t important.
  • Creating art will enrich your life in many ways.


Each project is designed to provide you with artistic knowledge in 4 basic categories: 


1) Concepts: Learning how to execute an artistic concept such as line, perspective, depth or volume 

(Visual Arts Content Standard #1: Artistic Perception: Processing, analyzing, and responding to sensory information through the language and skills unique to the visual arts -

Students perceive and respond to works of art, objects in nature, events, and the environment. They also use the vocabulary of the visual arts to express their observations.) 


2) Art History and Cultural Significance: Learning about the project’s point in history or cultural significance

(Visual Arts Content Standard #3: Historical and Cultural Context: Understanding the historical contributions and cultural dimensions of the visual arts-

Students analyze the role and development of the visual arts in past and present cultures

throughout the world, noting human diversity as it relates to the visual arts and artists.) 


3) Technique: Learning how to apply a certain material, such as watercolors markers, or pastels

(Visual Arts Standard #2: Creative Expression: Creating, performing, and participating in the visual arts-

Students apply artistic processes and skills, using a variety of media to communicate meaning and intent in original works of art.)


4) Creativity: Learning how to access your own creativity to create a true work of art.

(Visual Arts Standard #4: Aesthetic Valuing: Responding to, analyzing, and making judgments about works in the visual arts-

Students analyze, assess, and derive meaning from works of art, including their own, according to the elements of art, the principles of design, and aesthetic qualities.)


Woven throughout the curriculum are:


Visual Arts Standard #5: Connections, relationships, applications: Connecting and applying what is learned in the visual arts to other art forms and subject area and to careers-

Students apply what they learned in the visual arts across subject areas. They develop competencies and creative skills in problem solving, communications, and management of time and resources that contribute to lifelong learning and career skills. They also learn about careers in and related to the visual arts.


and Carlmont’s Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs):

All Carlmont students will

  1. Read and communicate proficiently.

o   Read proficiently to gather, analyze, and evaluate information.

o   Communicate effectively through written and oral language.

  1. Use problem-solving skills.

o   Use scientific, mathematical, technological, creative thinking, and critical reasoning skills in problem solving.

  1. Understand and work collaboratively with diverse groups of people.

o   Work effectively in groups of individuals with diverse backgrounds, languages, ideas, and learning styles.

  1. Demonstrate individual responsibility and respectful behavior.

o   Act ethically, responsibly, and respectfully, practicing principles of wellness and self-discipline.

  1. Explore a variety of courses and enrichment activities.

o   Enroll in courses that not only meet the graduation requirements, but also explore other opportunities.

Participate in extracurricular activities, such as athletics, clubs, community service, leadership, performing arts, work experience, etc

Carlmont High School’s Vision Statement

Our vision is to provide all students with a relevant education in a collaborative and supportive environment that inspires excellence in learning.

Carlmont High School’s Mission Statement

The Mission of CHS is to provide a supportive learning environment that allows all students to achieve success in academics and careers.  A Carlmont education fosters a community of creative thinkers who are confident and collaborative in a rapidly changing society.  Above all, we aspire to provide students with the skills they need to make positive contributions to their community and the world.


Departmental/School Policies:

  • Late work: can be accepted until the end of the closest grading period, with grade reduction at individual teacher’s discretion
  • Tardy Policy: each tardy= loss of ½ daily participation points. 3 tardies = conference with teacher, 4 tardies = phone call home, 5+ tardie s= detention with administration
  • Absence Policy: we strictly follow the district-wide policy of an automatic fail (FA) for 18 absences, including 3 cuts (except in extreme hardship)
  • Grading Policy: We follow a rubric which clearly outlines project expectations.
  • Internet Behavior and Rules:
  1. Use your full name and school email to join
  2. No vulgar, hurtful, homophobic or racist language or behavior
  3. Do not share your or anyone else’s personal information
  4. Do not wear clothing that would not be allowed at school
  5. No videotaping or taking any photos of the meetings
  6. No side conversations during Zoom meetings
  7. Obviously, no cyberbullying
  8. Follow the class Zoom norms
  9. Inform me if you are taking a bathroom break or have to leave for a short period of time.
  10. Be kind!!!!  Kindness is key to getting ahead in life. ;)



The following things no longer need to be said:

  • I can’t draw
  • I am bad at art
  • I have no imagination
  • I can’t even draw a straight line
  • I can barely draw stick figures
  • This is too hard
  • I draw like a little kid
  • Art isn’t really important
  • I won’t use art in my future 
  • I am not creative
  • I’m not a real artist


Parents and students:


I will be more than happy to communicate with you via email. I will typically get back to you within a day. Please sign on to Canvas, as I communicate important information to students and their families via that forum. Please do not hesitate to contact me regarding your/your child’s art education.  Also, this is new for all of us so please be patient and kind.



Ms. Andrews


Visual Arts Teacher, Carlmont High School       


Office Hours:  M, T, TH, F:  from 2:30-3:30.  Wednesdays:  By appointment 

Common Practice for Office Hours - CHS 2020-2021

Office Hours at CHS - 

  • Provide students an opportunity to manage their own academic responsibilities and, in turn, better prepare themselves for life after high school.
  • Provide additional time in the day that may alleviate the academic stress that students encounter.
  • Provide structures during the school day where all students may access additional support.


Students - 

  • May use office hours to get extra help, to make up work from an absence, or to finish an assignment.
  • May get individualized time with their teachers. 


Teachers - 

  • May recommend that students meet with them to complete assignments or to review material.
  • May not require students to attend office hours.
  • Should record any one-on-one meetings.
  • May use office hours for students to complete make-up work (including quizzes and tests) within a reasonable stated time period with multiple dates as options.
  • May not give new class assignments or new assessments during this optional time.
  • Should remember that make-up work should be manageable during the office hour time frame.

Course Summary:

Date Details Due