One nice thing about DBAE, apart from its usefulness and relevance, is that it
has stayed solidly with us for so many years. While we as art teachers have
weathered, perhaps even from the sidelines, the pendulum swings from whole
language to teach to the test over and over again, the standard for our
curriculum has remained fairly constant. I came very, very late to DBAE. I
trained in the open classroom years. Oh, Lord, remember them? We were TAUGHT by
our professors to lay out the supplies, then just sit and watch what happened.
DBAE came in just a year or two down the line and I avoided it like the plague
(even tho I actually did a lot of DBAE-oriented stuff without knowing it) until I
certified nationally two years ago. Then I had to do a lot of catching up, and
my classroom has been the richer for it. It certainly has given the visual arts
a defensible framework that goes way beyond making holiday art.
And, by the way, my sincerest sympathy to the person having to make the Santa
centerpieces. I've been there, too.