In the Art Room

10 Reasons Why Your Student Didn’t Bring Home Artwork Today

Dear Parents,

How are you? Did you enjoy summer vacation? I did. I especially enjoyed sleeping in until 7:00am. Are you excited for the new school year? Great! But, um, can we have a word first?

I’d like to address a question I know at least two or three of you will make a point of contacting me about this year, “Why isn’t my son/daughter bringing home more artwork?”

Great question! For your convenience, I have outlined below the top 10 reasons why your son/daughter isn’t bringing home any artwork.

1. Your son/daughter threw his/her artwork away. Look, I send your student out of my room with artwork. What happens to that artwork after it leaves my room is anyone’s guess. I have a strict Don’t Throw Away Your Artwork in the Art Room rule, but, well, there are many garbage cans out there. Just sayin’.

2. Your son’s/daughter’s artwork got lost. A lot can happen between the art room and your house. It’s a dangerous world out there, and believe it or not, art work goes missing. Every. Day. It might be an epidemic. I don’t know.

3. Your son/daughter didn’t have art today. But it’s Tuesday, right? My son/daughter always has art on Tuesdays. True. Except for today. Today there was an assembly. Well, and last week was a snow day, and two weeks from now there’s vacation, and isn’t your child going to be out sick next week? So…

4. We didn’t make any art today. It’s okay, because today we looked at examples of landscape paintings, analyzed the illusion of depth techniques, discussed how to use them in our artwork, and sketched ideas for a personal landscape painting that will utilize the illusion of depth techniques we learned about. So, no, we didn’t actually make any art today, but we were totally on task and learning about art. I promise.

5. Your son/daughter didn’t finish anything today. Dude, I probably don’t have to tell you, I mean, I shouldn’t have to tell you, but your child is a perfectionist. He/she works so slowly. And that’s okay, but he/she hasn’t actually completed a piece of art yet, and Holy Hannah, I don’t dare try to send it home unfinished.

6. I kept his/her work. It’s on display. Your child knows this. I’m sorry he/she didn’t tell you.

7. I kept his/her work for the art show. Listen, if I sent home all of the decent, completed work home, I wouldn’t have anything left for the art show. I keep work I’m thinking of putting in the art show, and I stash it away in a Top Secret location (see #10). I tell all students about this at the beginning of the year. They’re cool with it, I swear.

8. Your son/daughter didn’t put his/her name on it. I can only stand at the front of the room, holding up a painting, asking, “Does anyone claim this? Anyone? Anyone?” for so long before I start feeling like Ben Stein. Nameless, unclaimed work gets trashed. End of story.

9. Accidents happen. Paint gets spilled. Pots get dropped. Accidents happen. The work gets trashed (see #1). We’ve moved on, and so should you.

10. I lost it. It happens. Sometimes artwork goes missing in the art room. I take full responsibility. I don’t know what happened to it. This one’s on me.

Before emailing me, or cornering me after school, please refer to this chart. I guarantee you, the reason your son/daughter isn’t bringing home artwork is on this list. Feel free to pick your favorite. Personally, I randomly select one of these excuses whenever I need to reply to your email, but you do what works for you.


Your Favorite Neighborhood Art Teacher

How do you deal with this question? What are your favorite go-to responses?HowSave



3 thoughts on “10 Reasons Why Your Student Didn’t Bring Home Artwork Today

  1. Brings back memories! My after school art classes were often interrupted by special programs – magic shows, exotic animals, etc. Would have been nice to know about special events ahead of time.


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