Whether you're an experienced arts educator, or a teacher looking for ways to bring life to your curriculum through visual arts, music, drama and dance, this group will provide a place to meet, share, and imagine!

Why Art Education Must be Saved

Elana Leoni Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer

There was a recent article by Lynda Resnik in The Huffington Post on the arts in education.

Here's an excerpt:

"Studies show that art-centered schools outscore non-art-centered schools in academic achievement scores. Art education can actually help the brain to rewire itself, to make stronger and more plentiful neural connections, and can help build memory skills. Self-discipline, intuition, reasoning, imagination, and dexterity are just a few of the other benefits of an art-filled education, especially for primary school students. According to First Lady Michelle Obama, "Learning through the arts reinforces critical academic skills in reading, language arts, and math, and provides students with the skills to creatively solve problems."

So, how is it that, when it comes to art education, California comes in dead last out of all 50 states - even below Guam? According to State Councilman Bobby Shriver, California's public schools no longer even offer arts education.

Edutopia also has a detailed package on saving the arts, which includes resources, articles, and videos.

How do you make the case for arts education to be saved in your school? Please share your resources here.

Comments (14)

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Founder of The Kids for Coltrane Project in Education

Teaching Through the Arts Beckons Learners to Think Deeply

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It is truly uplifting reading all of this evidence which is shining a light on how teaching through the arts and developing deeper thinking go hand in hand. Bravo to this community!! I have been teaching through the arts from the very beginning of my career to this very day. Yes, you can develop deep thinking through other disciplines, but there is something so deeply human, so incredibly powerful to young learners which thinking and learning through the arts can provide. Perhaps it is the humanity in the work that draws in the young mind to want to learn, to want to explore, to bring their own thinking into play. I have witnessed the magnificence of teaching through the arts and it cannot be denied. I recommend to this community the work of Shari Tishman who is a leader at Harvard's Project Zero. Here is a site which involves her work that I think you may find valuable. http://www.decordova.org/decordova/education/awfs.html

"Works of art are designed to invite exploration, to engage, to beckon, to provoke. They offer rich rewards to those who make an effort understand them, and, through the process of understanding, make the structure and power of higher-level thinking particularly visible." Shari Tishman and Debra Wise

Teaching and Learning Consultant in Southend, Essex, U.K.

I think that Christine is

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I think that Christine is right.. the arts are about our humanity. If we look back into our distant past we will see the role that art (the cave paintings for example) and music (the universal language passed down through the generations)and of course drama (look at the amphitheatres of ancient Greece). We cannot neglect the arts because they are a part of us and now there is compelling evidence that they actually help our brain make connections that gives us skills in creative thinking and problem solving that we so desperately need in the world we are in now with its many economic and social problems.
As I said in a recent blog posting I will always remember a great conductor at a Proms concert in London saying, at the end of the famous "Last Night" in the Albert Hall, "we neglect the arts at our peril!" We certainly do.

7/8 Drama, Film, Honors & Regular Language Arts

The Nightmare about to Happen

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My principal and I were discussing next year and it seems there may not be any more room in the schedule for my class. This means there will no longer be an Arts class in the Jr. High. There will not be painting, drawing and learning about the History and Appreciation of TV, Radio and Film. I also teach Public Speaking and Speech Acquisition. I have watched my right brained children succeed in a world where they never knew they could be a success. I have watched their eyes open and their minds explode viewing films from all over the world. Once again we are cutting the arts because we do not have room for an elective, and California remains at the bottom of all 50 states. The Music teacher who is my colleague still remains fortunate to maintain his job of teaching only a small percentage of very lucky children. But, few students ever know the joy of holding an instrument and playing together the beauty of music. And, even fewer will know the magic of the silver screen unless it is a video game or an X-Box.

I am going to have a bulletin

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I am going to have a bulletin board set up when we start the new school year singing the praise of art in education. Thank you all for the work you do. I will use many of your ideas in showing our district why we need to keep our arts program going.

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