SchoolArts Magazine

AUG-SEP 2010

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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poinT oF view ART: A Catalyst for Compassion Eldon Katter A s teachers of 5. Do you have a timeart, we can line in your classroom? help students 6. Do you have maps in think about your classroom? what makes beauty 7. Do you encourage in their lives and the geographic literacy commonalities that and enable students to bind us together. We understand how people, can also help them to the arts they create, and become more thoughtthe places they inhabit ful about their aesthetic are intertwined and judgments rather than influence each other? tell them what their 8. Do you enrich the judgments should be. study of art with the More importantly, we frequent use of stories, can expose students to narratives, biographies, other artistic choices autobiographies, and while respecting their journals? personal preferences and 9. Do you remind stuvalues. dents to think about art The result may as the story of artists be that students will whose actions, beliefs, respond to new ideas concerns, decisions, and and situations with struggles help to shape compassion and tolerthe world? ance. They may extend 10. Do you stress the their artistic awareness importance of creativity to a wider sphere, or and the role of individthey may choose to stay ual artists in establishwithin the context of ing or furthering new their own cultural patnorms? Projects such as Pinwheels for Peace offer students opportunities for terns for the purpose 11. Do you emphasize developing compassion for others. Photo by Nancy Walkup. of improving social the role of artists in conditions, refining increasing awareness 2. Do studio art experiences allow the human landscape, and preserving of environmental issues and abuses, students an opportunity to be mindful as well as to the beauty of the natural their natural environment, always of the cultural realities that surround with an eye for equality and beauty. world? them? The following 12. Do you call attention to the ways We can expose students to 3. Do art history questions may that artists can make a difference in and criticism help us think how people think about social injusother artistic choices while experiences about ways we can tices and suffering in the world? respecting their personal allow students make art a cata13. Do you focus on human commonpreferences and values. an opportunity lyst for compasalities when you introduce students to identify with the cultures that gave sion: to the art of a wide range of cultural rise to artworks? groups? 1. Do you teach art in context so that 4. Do you incorporate references to an artwork, whether already existing Eldon Katter is co-author of Explorations general history or provide a historior in the process of being created, is in Art (Davis Publications) and former cal frame of reference for students' seen in relation to social and emoeditor of SchoolArts. ekatter@ptd.net encounters with art? tional consequences as well as aesthetic qualities? 12 August/September 2010 SchoolArts

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