The Portrait as Metaphor: A Study of the World of John Singleton Copley
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These lessonplans are intended for teaching in a conventional high-school classroom, complete with a blackboard, projection screen or white wallspace, and a bulletin board or other area appropriate for the fixing of papers by means of thumbtacks, magnets, or tape. All three of these facilities are necessary. They are necessary because the design of these lessonplans is cumulative and sequential, proceeding by stages with much movement back and forth between stages, and, most importantly, with the constant necessity of returning again to stages previously developed. It is therefore not enough to incorporate earlier stages into later ones. The earlier stages must be preserved in one form or another, so that they can be returned to when it is appropriate to do so. For example, the first stage, or Level One, of the methodology which informs these plans, requires the listing of a great many observed facts. While in typical classroom practice the habitual place to list these facts is the blackboard, for the purposes of this methodology, no medium could be more inappropriate. A blackboard must be erased to free it for later stages. To erase a stage is to lose it; even if students have taken exhaustive notes, the common display of the information the class has created together becomes dust. An important measure of vitality is lost in that transformation from communal effort to more notes, as yet uncontemplated (and perhaps never to be). Two much more important media for listing Level One facts are the overhead projector and simple sheets of newsprint. Both of these media allow the presentation of grease pencil lists for later reference, and if the design of the classroom permits, newsprint sheets taped to the wall or pinned to bulletin boards allow the spectacular display of all of each level as developed, stage-by-stage, simultaneously. In the first,
“Epes Sargent’’: A Sacrifice to Change
, lessonplan in this unit, such as display is particularly appropriate, because it will introduce students to the notion of a
for seeing well in a way that they will be able to see laid out before them. Indeed, intellectual movement between levels becomes a matter in actual classroom practice of moving from place to place in the classroom, from one collection of sheets of hanging newsprint to another. The kinetics of such a medium are analogous to the dynamics of methodology, and can only reinforce the feel students will have for the design of what they are studying.