Facts First!

Activity Instructions

Begin by comparing and contrasting two stories or artworks that the class is familiar with based on facts. Then discuss which one you like better. For example, a discussion about South Beach, Staten Island and Beach Scene might include the following factual statements:

  • “Both take place at the beach.”
  • “There is an umbrella in both of them.”
  • South Beach, Staten Island has more details than Beach Scene.
  • “The colors are brighter in Beach Scene.
  • “You can barely see the water in Beach Scene, but you can see ships far away in South Beach, Staten Island.
  • “The beach in South Beach, Staten Island looks more crowded.”

As you compare and contrast the paintings, make sure to keep the discussion factual. You may want to record key observations on a Venn Diagram or similar graphic organizer.

Use the facts that you’ve recorded as a basis for opinion statements, making sure to go beyond simply saying “I like   some painting   better.”

Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University
  • South Beach, Staten Island

    South Beach, Staten Island
    Henry Schnakenberg

  • Beach Scene

    Beach Scene
    Edward Potthast