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cindi

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From: Carolyn Keigley (Carolyn_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Mon Aug 12 2002 - 20:10:57 PDT


Cindi,
Sorry this has taken so long to respond. I had loaned out my Lowenfeld and
Brittain's book, but I have a few quotes to consider.
The authors claim that it is at this age (H.S.) that youth begin purposeful
learning in art and a good art program needs to express the students
thoughts, emotions and reactions to his environment. "The high school art
program should be based upon what young adults are involved in and concerned
about today's world, not a program that is oriented making artists."
 Hum - that should drum up a few opinions.
"There is no correct art. Art has traditionally been a reflection of the
culture in which it was found. There are no rules to artistic success, for
the rules are made by people, and these are constantly changing. For art to
be important it must be a reflection of the individual making it."
"The basis for an art program in the senior high school should therefore be
the student more fully in the culture in which he finds himself, it should
provide the opportunity for him to face himself and his own needs."
"All too often, the art courses offered in the high school are planned well
in advanced by some committee in the state capitol, and courses have a step
by step progression that is clearly stated in the syllabus. There is a real
need for an exciting, meaningful program in art for high school students."
The authors also believes that we should be treating this age group as
adults with choices, both with subject matter and with materials.
From what I can gather from their text the authors believe that teaching
representational skills or elements and principles of art to this age group
should be when the student is ready and has a desire to learn them.

I am not so sure about the authors ideas about high school students as this
will be my first year in working with this age group.
However for the past 15 years I have been working with elementary age
children both in art education and regular education and I feel the
Lowenfeld and Brittain's ideas on developmental stages is right on the mark.
I highly recommend this book for those working with this age group. As
artists we can modify their ideas into a good art program for the younger
children. But at the same time we artists need to remember that the young
child's needs or very different from that of an adult. Piget theories are
still held valid today in the educational field and applied in other
disciplines such as reading, math, etc., but not in art education. According
to Lowenfeld and Brittain they should be.
Just curious what are some thoughts on this from others out there?

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