Tuesday, January 15, 2013

is a registry in my future?

sandro botticelli, "the birth of venus" 1482

"the birth of venus"...so lovely...so tranquil...so possibly going to make me have to register as a sex offender...

today was the first day of a brand-new year of learning-at-lunch classes for me, and i've got three good ones that i'm teaching: embroidery, art history club (4-6 graders) and art history club (1-3 graders). today was 1-3 graders who were learning very, very basic art history (what is art? who makes art? where do you see art? etc.), and i ended our discussion with a challenge for the kids to invent a story using an image of a renowned work of art glued to an oversized index card, one of which was botticelli's "the birth of venus..."

...and a group of little girls kinda freaked. minorly freaked. they were kinda minorly freaked. they giggled then asked me if i knew she was naked. "she's not naked, she's nude," i said, realizing at that same moment that 6-8 year olds probably don't quite get the difference yet and if they're commenting at all they're probably not ready to analyze this image...so i said, "oops! you're right--let's use a different card" and gave them one with seurat's "sunday afternoon on the island of the grande jatte." it all took a matter of seconds.

they said that one was boring. "the people are watching a boat race and doing nothing." boring. "there isn't anything going on." boring. "no one is doing anything." boring. boring. "it's boooooorrrrring...do we have to come back next week?"

the other three student groups came up with wonderful observations that i listened to with half an ear, as i was starting to sweat over the thought that one of those little girls was going to go home and tell a parent they "had art history club at lunch today and the teacher showed us pictures of naked people. what's for dinner?" after their apoplectic parent recovered their verbal ability i'm quite sure they'd make a call to the principal post haste, hence my worry that i'm going to end up registering as a sex offender for mistakenly showing elementary students a botticelli in class.

oy vey.

georges seurat, "sunday afternoon on the island of the grande jatte" 1881

***UPDATE*** 1/29/13
currently, not on a registry.  found out two days after the incident that the little girls didn't bother to wait until they got home--when asked by their teacher how learning at lunch was, they blurted out, "the teacher showed us naked pictures!"  i have no clue how the teacher responded to that information, but as it didn't result in a visit from the po-po i figure i'm alright.  i found out about this from a totally different set of little girls who were learning how to embroider...being taught by me...and after i told them i also taught art history they asked, "are you the one that showed the naked pictures in class?"

they all came back the next week.  :)

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