SchoolArts Magazine

NOV 2014

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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STATEMENT OF OWNERSHIP—MANAGEMENT AND CIRCULATION Required by the Act of Congress of August 12, 1970. (Section 3, 685, Title 39, United States Code) 1. SchoolArts. 3. Filed this September 23, 2014. 4. Published monthly—September through May. 5 No. of issues published annually, nine. 6. Annual subscription price, $24.95. 7. and 8. 50 Portland Street, Worcester, MA 01608 9. Publisher, Wyatt R. Wade, 50 Portland Street, Worcester, MA 01608; Editor, Nancy Walkup, 2223 Parkside Drive, Denton, Texas, 76201; Managing Editor, Hana Lasell, 50 Portland Street, Worcester, MA 01608. 10. That the owner is Davis Publications, Inc., 50 Portland Street, Worces- ter, MA 01608 8. There are no bondholders, mortgagees, and other security holders owning or holding 1 percent or more of total amount of bonds, mortgages, or other securities. 13.— 13. Average No. Copies Each Issue During Preceding 12 Months Single Issue Nearest to Filing Date A. Total No. Copies (Net Press Run) 14,667 12,000 B. (1) Paid and/or Requested Circulation Sales through Dealers and Carriers, Street Vendors, and Coun- ter Sales (Not Mailed) None None B. (2) Paid or Requested Mail Subscriptions (Include Advertis- ers' Proof Copies Exchange Copies) 10,257 8,749 C. Total Paid and/or Requested Circulation (Sum of 15b(1) and 15b(2) 10,257 8,749 D. (1) Free Distribution by Mail (sample, complimentary, and other free) 932 933 D. (4) Free Distribution Outside the Mail 1,256 324 E. Total Free Distribution (sum of and 15d. (1) and (4)) 2,188 1,257 F. Total Distribution (sum of 15c. and 15e.) 12,445 10,006 G. Copies not Distributed 2,222 1,994 H. Total (Sum of 15f. and 15g.) 14,667 12,000 I. Percent Paid and/or Requested Circulation (15c. divided by 15f. times 100) 82 87 I certify that the statements made by me above are correct and complete. WYATT WADE, Publisher Inspiring Your Students So what can you say to stu- dents to encourage them to experiment, be flexible, and seek unique solutions? According to Mark Runco, professor of education at the University of Georgia, the best tactic is to ask students to: "Do something that only you would come up with—that none of your friends or family would think of." When this advice is given, the number of creative responses doubles. For me, the box is like an artist's studio, a sci- entist's laboratory, or a woodworker's shop. It holds all the useful things you have learned to assist in finding multiple solutions to your next big question. Sometimes you will need to go outside your box and bring back something new. You might want to visit some other boxes, like schools, museums, libraries, or hardware stores, or meet with those who have con- structed boxes that are different from yours. As you grow, your box becomes more personal and reflective of your interests. You need not abandon the box. The box can be your friend. Sharon Vatsky is the director of school and family programs at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Continued from page 12. P O I N T O F V I E W Thinking Inside the Box 12 November 2014 SchoolArts Continued on page 44. A s the conversation in the field of education turns more and more to creativity, teachers are imploring their students to "think outside the box." Recent studies, how- ever, suggest that this plea may actually yield the opposite result. What is this "box" that we should be getting out of? According to neurologist Kenneth Heilman, author of Creativity and the Brain (Psychology Press, 2005), cre- ativity involves coming up with some- thing new, as well as shutting down the brain's habitual response and let- ting go of conventional solutions. Looking Around Inside the Box When trying to solve a problem, most of us begin with familiar solutions. However, if the answer doesn't come, our brains begin searching for alterna- tives. We search for connections in both familiar and more distant areas, pulling thoughts together into a single new idea that enters consciousness. This is the "aha" moment of insight. Now the brain must evaluate the idea it has just generated. Creativity requires this constant shift- ing between both convergent and divergent thinking— of looking around both "inside the box" and venturing out of it. Synthesis In History In her book, Creativity from Con- straints (Springer Publishing, 2006), Patricia D. Stokes argues that being completely free and without con- straints actually hinders problem solving and creativity. History is filled with examples of breakthroughs that are not the result of abandoning the box, but rather finding a unique synthesis of "in the box" and "out of the box" thinking. Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque worked together for eight years to find the new way of representing the world that came to be known as Cubism. Claude Monet limited his subject matter in order to focus on changing light and atmo- spheric effects, and Piet Mondrian continued to reduce his options until his work contained only the most dis- tilled elements. The Box as Fertile Ground Although the "box" can imply con- straint, other boxes are considered fertile areas for ideas and exploration. The "black box theater" is nearly syn- onymous with experimentation and suggests a space that is flexible, ver- satile, and easy to change. Galleries are sometimes referred to as "white boxes"—clean, open spaces that are perfect for exhibiting all kinds of art. And, of course, there are those "tool- boxes" that educators fill with useful teaching strategies and methodolo- gies. All boxes are clearly not created equal. In her book, The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life: A Practi- cal Guide (Simon and Schuster, 2003), acclaimed choreographer Twyla Tharp describes her way of utilizing "the box." She begins every new dance with a literal cardboard box. She writes the name of the project on the outside of the box and proceeds to fill it up with every item that went into creating that work, including clip- pings, videos, notes, and photos. She states: . . . a box is like soil to me. It's basic, earthy, elemental. It's home. It's what I can always go back to when I need to regroup and keep my bearings. Knowing that the box is always there gives me the freedom to venture out, be bold, dare to fall flat on my face. Before you can think out of the box, you have to start with a box. Sharon Vatsky Creativity involves coming up with something new, as well as letting go of conventional solutions.

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