Philosophy of Art Education
Art education is an integral part of personal, social, and cultural growth. In order for students to develop and strengthen their mental capabilities, students of all ages need to be exposed to multiple forms of knowledge and ways of expressing their thoughts. The visual arts will provide students with an awareness of the rich art history that has shaped our world before there was a spoken language (cave paintings). Both past and contemporary art practice within the diverse cultures around us, reveals the importance of the visual arts in our lives. When studied, students can attempt to grasp the true impact and magnificent range the visual and performing arts have in our everyday lives. For example, from functional art to the aesthetic; from art used as a form of personal expression to art used for social or political commentary: A world without art would be entirely void of so many of the items that define who we are and how we live.*
A balanced education in the arts should strive to promote a variety of communication skills that foster critical thinking, integrate other academic disciplines, and encourage experiences in self-discovery. Helping students develop their own style, express opinions, and defend artistic judgments, while teaching them to respect these qualities in others, are all essential elements in art education. Using problem-posing dialogues that challenge students to think beyond their comfort levels, gives students the opportunity to engage with issues that lead to deep-rooted learning. Recognizing students' individual abilities, in addition to entire class needs, contributes to class-wide learning by acknowledging that not every student learns the same way. Lessons should differentiate instruction to accommodate every student in the classroom/course. When enhanced through the construction of meaningful student-teacher relationships, art education promotes the creative thinking that teaches students to become better problem-solvers, innovative thinkers, and active contributors to the progressive and diverse society in which we live.
* i.e. clothes/fashion, music, song, dance, comics, cartoons, tv/movies, furniture, decorations, photography, pottery, and so much more!