SchoolArts Magazine

November 2017

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 7 of 54

Editor's Letter W hen I was the elementary director of the National Art Edu- cation Association (NAEA), I worked on the committee to write an NAEA position statement on social justice, a cause I believe to be critically important. (Position statements are reflective of national issues or topics of interest to art educators and are regularly developed and reviewed to provide support for teachers.) That experience inspired this issue of SchoolArts. For this issue, I must also thank two co-editors who contributed greatly to its scope and content: Wanda B. Knight, associate profes - sor of art education and women's, gender, and sexuality studies at Penn State School of Visual Arts; and David Gran, a high-school teacher at the Shanghai American School in China and author of the art education blog, The Carrot Revolution. You may be familiar with activism through the arts for efforts such as Pinwheels for Peace, the Memory Project, and the Hexagon Project from articles in SchoolArts, or elsewhere. These kinds of efforts provide a platform for developing kindness and thoughtfulness towards others. They were all begun by just one or two people, but have now become widespread due to the accessibility of the Internet. Our issue this month shares other similar efforts by art educators. They might just inspire your own. NAEA Position Statement on Social Justice NAEA recognizes the importance of art education to raise critical consciousness, foster empathy and respect for others, build community, and motivate people to pro- mote positive social change. Service learn- ing is one approach to education in which social justice is addressed through service with others, often in arts-based projects. Artists often engage with the issues of their time, and some treat the creation of art as a social practice. Art can provide a meaningful catalyst to engage individuals and communities to take action around a social issue. The processes by which people create and interact with art can help them understand and challenge inequities through art education and social justice. The interconnectedness of the Internet has enabled many social justice and ser- vice learning projects to grow into global arts-based efforts. Visual art educators are encouraged to have their students partici- pate in pre-existing social justice/service learning projects or to develop their own. [Adopted March 2015] position-statements Murals often express social or environmental concerns through art. Nancy sits by a mural in Tucson that draws attention to the endangered jaguar. Visit Follow me on SCHOOLARTSMAGAZINE.COM 3

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