SchoolArts Magazine

JAN 2013

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Page 14 of 58

AdvocAcy The Truth About Art Education Eldon Katter T he unquestionable truth about art education is simple: As a result of a sound art education, young people end up knowing more about human artistic potential and accomplishments. Additionally, art education provides experiences that are unique in education. Not only do students learn about art, they also learn about perception and our visual world, about our cultural heritages, and about mastery of skills. dents begin to see their needs, values, and beliefs in relation to those of the diverse peoples throughout the world and in their local communities. As students move from the personal, through their community to the global, they form an expanded knowledge of their world. learning About Skill and Mastery Many skills used by artists are based upon traditional ways of doing things. These processes have been handed down from artisan to apprentice through hundreds of generations, and traditions are continued because they have been found to work. As they acquire the ability to work with patience, precision, and care, students learn an even more important life lesson: "If it's worth doing at all, it's worth doing well." Eldon Katter is co-author of Explorations in Art (Davis Publications) and former editor of SchoolArts. learning About Art Quality art education offers the opportunity for all learners to experience the personal pleasures and special understandings that can be gained through repeated encounters with masterfully articulated forms of visual communication, decoration, and celebration. learning About Perception Perception is perhaps the most important part of visual arts education. It's concerned with changing and shifting viewpoints. Through art experiences, we learn how to see the same thing in different ways and from different perspectives. With practice, we can learn to broaden our perception, look more widely, take other things into account, and be more open to possibilities and choices. learning About our visual World We live in a society that is dominated by manipulated images, designed objects, and planned structures that affect the natural order of the environment. To live successfully and participate fully in this visually oriented world, we all need to understand and evaluate the purposes of the visual forms we encounter on a daily basis. learning About Global heritages Global implications in education are increasingly evident. Access to the Internet makes the need for global awareness greater than ever before. Through encounters with art, stu12 January 2013 SchoolArts Art helps students gain an understanding of the diverse peoples throughout the world. South African Ndebele artist Esther Nikwambi Mahlangu at the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market. Photo by Nancy Walkup.

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