Recently the American School of Bombay hosted a conference on using
laptops in schools. "ASB Unplugged" brought educators from all over the
world together to hear expert speakers on the implementation of
technology in the classroom, view our one-to-one laptop program in
action and discuss preparing students for the 21st century. Dr. Scott
McLeod gave a keynote address titled, "Kickstarting Schools for the 21st
Century" which outlined the "transformative potential of digital
During this conference my art classes were working on creating some
models for building facades they had designed in the "kitsch
architecture" style. That day the students in my classes were completely
engaged (admittedly, not always the case) because they were doing
something authentic - figuring out how to make something real. They were
collaborating, solving various engineering problems, creating individual
visual solutions and learning that craftsmanship takes time and
concentration. In short, using $2.00 worth of cardboard, an exacto knife
and a glue gun, these students were also participating in learning the
skills necessary for success in the 21st century as outlined by Dr.
I believe that arts courses, by their nature, are already leading the
way in preparing students for the 21st century. As curriculum design
changes to include these 21st century skills, the arts programs, too
often marginalized, may emerge as the model we are looking for. As part
of a project to show how the arts programs at ASB are leaders in
developing these 21st century skills I put together this website:
Here you will find how various parts of our curriculum, from concept
through assessment, is designed to help those students who take visual
arts learn the skills of communication, assessing quality, thinking
creatively, and applying a self-critical approach to problem solving.
These skills can be applied in any field. Yes, we use technology too.
We share this site here in the hopes that our approach may be helpful,
but that it will also generate discussion that will help us grow as
educators here at ASB.