Patricia Knott asked this question: Is there anywhere a class that just
dissects ART teaching theories? Her question seems to come out of a concern
that we are sometimes just taught methods without understanding from where
these methods come? I have had the same concerns, so in my undergraduate and
graduate classes, these issues are covered. It takes time and some would say
it takes away from pragmatic concerns. But I agree with Patricia...it is
important to have a thorough understanding of the reasoning and validity behind
art education methods and practices. But I love this stuff and I am a
university professor who does not face the constant realities of the ec-12 art
classroom. I have to face the realities of the undergraduate and graduate
classroom (online and face to face) which is altoghether another beast. There
is a big difference. I know. I have done both. :-)
I try to do this throughout my undergraduate and graduate program in art
education. I can't cover them all but I do cover the following approaches or
theories as it relates to curriculum development in art education: child
centered approach, studio approach, discipline-based art education, visual
culture, and art, culture & environment. I do try to represent them accurately
in their "pure" state. Most students and teachers "confess" to me that they
practice and believe in a blending of all of these approaches.
I teach a graduate online course in curriculum and instruction in which we
explore these philosophies and approaches. We also cover them in an online
graduate course on the history and philosophy of art education from a
historical and cultural perspective. Through it all most of my students seem
to begin to have faith that they can invent their own methods based upon a
solid grounding in the learning and theory of art education. Many of their
approaches are quite creative personal solutions that have evolved out their
own experiences and ideas based on these theories.
I, for one, still introduce students to the stages of artisitic development as
explained by Viktor Lowenfeld. Although I do explain other approaches as well.
I do continue to support some of his ideas on child centered art education and
his emphasis on creativity. I have reconceptualized them over the years into
my own brand of Lowenfeldian principles. Nevertheless, I can trace them back
to his influence on my own art education theory development.
Quoting Patricia Knott <firstname.lastname@example.org>:
> On Sep 23, 2006, at 3:58 PM, email@example.com wrote:
> > I am not sure Lowenfeld's Creative and Mental Growth is even
> > discussed much in
> > undergraduate and graduate courses anymore. Many people felt he
> > was the
> > "father" of art education. Also, some felt he was the "mother" of art
> > education because his approach was so nurturing. As a third
> > generation
> > Lowenfeld art educator, I attribute some of my current beliefs and
> > practices to
> > him. Here's to Lowenfeld. :-)
> would that be a great topic for somebody's thesis. --- What is
> mothering art and what is fathering?.
> I wonder too, how much Lowenfeld is a part of undergrad Art Ed theory
> classes. I suspect not too much. Seems to me what the teaching is
> about today is methods with little understanding of how we get to the
> methods. Is there anywhere a class that just dissects ART teaching
> theories? I truly think we have to take a few steps back and
> understand that no matter what we present as lessons there ARE stages
> of development.
> As I weed through posts and questions, I often wonder-- do you
> really understand how a child progresses through...? Some day I may
> write the paper on the "multiple intelligences" in art making.
> Everybody would be well served to revisit Lowenfeld.
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