SchoolArts Magazine

MAR 2009

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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Beth Burkhauser I What Is Interdependence? Interdependence is a simple idea, difficult to realize, yet critical to examine, and ripe for formulating big questions. It includes learning to: • livetogetherpeaceablyand respectfully in the post-communist, post-Cold War, post-modern period; • seeourselvesasglobalandlocal citizens and act accordingly; • usetherevolutionininformation and communications technologies to bring the peoples of the world closer together; • totranscendhatreds,biases,and resentments, and turn our energies to devising ways in which we can coexist creatively and collaboratively; • narrowthewideninggapbetween rich and poor and the vast cultural religious, economic, and political differences among us. nterdependence Day The Hexagon Project provides stuwas launched in Philadents the chance to hone their skills delphia at the American in research, writing, and artistic Philosophical Society expression, and to understand more on September 12, 2003. The deeply the ways in which the arts can date was chosen deliberbe a vehicle for constructing meanately as a post-9/11 syming. Students can work alone or colbol of regeneration, as laboratively in any media on a series a time to reflect on of linked hexagons. the tragedy of the The Hexagon Project exhibit will incidents of terror, fill the walls of the Melberger Arts not only in the Center in Scranton, Pennsylvania, United States, during the month of September 2009. but all over the This will be the third year for the world, and exhibit, which has grown larger and ask, "What more successful each year. We want next?" It to expand the exhibit to include more seemed critistudents from more states and councally important tries. The deadline is June 30, 2009, to acknowledge so you still have ample time to get the inevitability involved. and significance of interdependence in Utilizing Resources our time, and set out We welcome you to utilize the followto build constructively a ing resources and link your students global civic society. and other subject areas by exploring It is the hope of founder, the meanings of interdependence Sondra Myers, senior fellow in their world through the Hexagon for international, civic, and culProject. You can log on to www.idaytural Projects at the University of to download a thematic Scranton, that Web worksheet, the annual obsersample artwork, The Hexagon Project vance of this day the required hexaprovides students the will eventually chance to understand more gon template/ have the same worksheet, general deeply the ways in which rules, entry and impact that Earth the arts can be a vehicle for release forms, an Day has had on the global enviextensive research constructing meaning. ronmental movebibliography, and ment. So far, it is having that effect, essays from the Interdependence as we have had participation from Handbook. An Interdependence ToolAustralia, Cameroon, Africa, Nepal, kit with DVD for curriculum integraand the United States. tion is also available. The Hexagon Project The shape of the hexagon was chosen as the symbol of Interdependence Day. In geometry, a hexagon is a polygon with six edges and six vertices. Hexagons fit or link together without any gaps, such as in honeycombs and tessellations. Hexagons created for the Interdependence Day Hexagon Project are guaranteed to link your students to the major issues of their own lives and the lives of others in communities, states, and nations around the world. Note: This lesson can also be adapted to the high-school level. Beth Burkhauser is an adjunct instructor in art education at Keystone College, LaPlume, Pennsylvania. She is Chair of the Interdependence Day Hexagon Project with co-chairs George Barbolish and Annette Palutis. WeB liNk 39

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