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Lesson Plans

anti-intellectualism ...

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
James Linker (jal19)
Sat, 24 Jan 1998 21:44:50 -0500

Earlier today I wrote --

>"Just how are they to do this without the intellectual tools and
>background knowledge necessary to make such comparisons of the arts to
>our society?".

and Mr. Beeching replied --

>Are we putting the cart before the horse here? Are we talking about
>stages in development? Undergraduate studies are quite different from
>graduate studies. Most classroom teachers never attain a Ph.D. or an
>Ed.D. They rarely are confronted by courses in "Epistemology",
>"Aesthetics," or "Theories of Learning." But they do need to understand
>how to present children with a scope and sequence approach to learning
>art process and skill development. What is so "anti-intellectual" about

Nothing. Unless you are suggesting that K-12 teachers don't need a more
sophisticated understanding of culture than their students. as for

>courses in "Epistemology", "Aesthetics," or "Theories of Learning."

if they do their bachelors degree and certification at a quality university
they will encounter these problems, and if they don't they should transfer

If i'm going to teach teachers, my first goal is to get them to confront
their motivations and assumptions about teaching. Mr. Beeching's arguement
for the primacy of studio production reminds me of an article Don Judd
wrote some years back for *Artforum* in which he insisted that the best
artists were obligated to teach. Trouble with that is that there is no
guarentee that the best artist can teach his/her way out of a wet paper
sack. Pedagogy is a craft, you don't get it out of a lesson plan or a tube
of paint, or a bag of clay.

Finally, I am hardly suggesting that

>a scope and sequence approach to learning art process and skill development

is insignificant. It is rather, a single component of a complex practice
(teaching) that only suffers from such dilution.

enough of that.



Use each man after his desert and who shall `scape whipping?

Shakespeare, *Hamlet*


james alan linker
doctoral candidate, art education
the pennsylvania state university
school of visual arts