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Re:[teacherartexchange] Erasing/prohibiting student art long post


From: Donna Pumphrey (dpumphrey_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Thu Apr 10 2008 - 04:46:11 PDT

This even fits in to elementary school now days. I serve two schools in a rural community where hunting is still a part of every day culture. In todays politically correct age, I do not allow them to even draw hunting or guns.

 With teachers being scrutinized for even taking children to an art gallery with the possiblity of them passing what someone might deem "offensive nudes", most of us feel we can't take chances with our job. And yet, visual and verbal images stream at children and adolescents through T.V., radio, and internet that most parents allow in their homes. It is indded a thin line and a fuzzy one.

I do encourage them to express themselves and their feelings through artwork, but if it is not "School appropriate" they must do so at home, not in the classroom.

Times are different now, and although some of the aggression, rebellion, and shock value that some adolescents express is normal, one must be careful in how that comes across and how that is displayed in art and culture. Even more alarming and interesting is the current practice of googling someones name who is trying to get a job to see what kind of things are out there about them. One needs to be careful of what one posts artistically as a child or adolescent as this may be seen by future employers and questioned.

Although I am for a kinder gentler culutre I sometimes wonder what the impact of not letting children/adolescents/adults access to less harmful ways of venting angst might be. If it is pent up will it come out all at once? If we have a double standard of not allowing artwork that is considered provactive in culture, and yet allowing almost obscene images to appear daily on our T.V. programs, how will young adolescents self image be affected?

Interesting times to teach in and be a part of.


Donna Pumphrey
Harmony/Union Grove
+ I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way--things I had no words for.-Georgia O'Keefe

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