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RE: [art_education] Skills vs. creativity


From: Hillmer, Jan (hillmjan_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Feb 08 2004 - 15:04:38 PST

Thanks for sharing this, Linda. It's comforting to hear about challenges our kids face and how to cope with them - the situation is ringing some bells for me. Our job is all about the kids.

        -----Original Message-----
        From: []
        Sent: Sat 2/7/2004 9:00 AM
        To: ArtsEdNet Talk
        Subject: Re: [art_education] Wipe out-Woody

        You are right, Woody. Nobody but a trained artist or art ed person gets
        it. I lost count years ago of the kids who veered off into another
        direction from my intended project because I let them go with their
        enthusiasm and ideas. It's not a power trip we are on, it's about
        teaching kids to love the creative process and appreciate art. If they
        happen to become fantastic artists along the way, it is no surprise. I
        have been in a classroom lately where the "trained" art professional
        (actually, she is an art teacher) has kids copy her own art. Every kids
        art is GORGEOUS, and they all look the same. So SAD! Even trained
        people need to be able to let go of the extreme power trips that they
        can find themselves on. She has no qualms about showing anyone who
        comes in "her art" and takes pride in showing off the kids' work that is
        just like hers. Unbelievable. They are trained in only one way that I
        can see...technically. To miss the point that kids can be trained
        technically and have their own creativity nurtured is a travesty. I
        can't believe this person has held a position in this otherwise great
        school for as long as she has. The other teachers in the department are
        great art teachers where creativity and skill development both reign. I
        can only imagine the conversations and feelings they must have. I have
        inherited a few of this first person's students and they are definitely
        skillful. To see them be able to use their skills with open ended
        results is interesting to watch. Some love it, some freak out and need
        a lot of encouragement on how to choose from an open ended approach.
        Our job is most definitely to respect their ideas and teach them at the
        same time.
        Linda Woods
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