Artistic Behaviors Artistic behaviors are honored and noted in the ongoing daily assessment process.
Choice-based art education uses multiple forms of assessment to support student and teacher growth.
Some of the artistic behaviors choice teachers value include:

  • Risk-taking
  • Following a line of thought over time
  • Going deep with a preferred medium or technique
  • Playing and experimenting
  • Bringing aspects of their life into their art

Documentation Teacher-created documentation captures observations of students’ artistic behaviors, needs and accomplishments.
Teachers create easy-to-manage record keeping:

  • Large charts where students can input their daily center use
  • Mini journals that students fill out at class end
  • Notes in teacher plan books
  • Digital photo records of finished student work
  • Portfolios, both digital and paper

Rubrics are negotiated between students and teachers and are broad enough to affirm diverse learning styles.Below is a rubric created by a grade five class.  These rubrics were generated while viewing student artwork as examples of excellence, selected by the teacher.  Examples show a range of materials.  Some represent weeks of work while others are simple sketches done in minutes.


  • Artists get ideas for their artwork from their personal experiences, resources (books, other artists’ work, etc.) and from art materials.
  • Artwork shows good effort and planning.
  • Artwork is complete. All areas and parts are carefully thought out and the artist is satisfied that the artwork is “done.”
  • All 3-D artwork is built to last – no loose pieces held on by tape, no clay attachments that are not securely scored together.
  • Artists includes some of the elements of art such as line, color, pattern, texture and shape and some principles of art such as rhythm, contrast and balance.
  • Artists show respect for materials and tools by cleaning up their workspace before moving to a new center and at the end of class.
  • Artists shows respect for classmates’ artwork by not touching and by sharing positive comments.
  • Artists are always productive in class with their own artwork or helping a classmate or teacher or researching ideas for future artworks.

Self-Assessment and Collaborative Assessment

  • Self-assessment occurs on a regular basis, both informally and with self-reflection writing.  Collaborative assessment includes peer coaching, group sharing, curating exhibits and conferencing with the teacher.
  • Students are coached to work with and through mistakes.
  • Students reflect on struggles and brainstorm alternate strategies to work through difficulties.
  • Students are given multiple opportunities to revisit media or techniques that were not successful for them at first.
  • Student coaches work with peers for problem solving and reflection on process.
  • Preparation for art exhibits involves writing or dictating artist statements to accompany work.