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The Creative Arts in the Early Childhood Classroom

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Title: The Creative Arts in the Early Childhood Classroom


1
The Creative Arts in the Early Childhood
Classroom
  • CDEC 1358
  • Nita Thomason, Ed.D.

2
Identify someone whom you would call creative.
  • What is it about this person
  • that earns the title
  • of creative?

3
Think about yourself.
  • What is it about you that
  • that makes you unique,
  • different, special?
  • What do you do
  • creatively?

4
Creativity is a thinking and responding process
that involves connecting with our previous
experience, responding to stimuli, and
generating at least one unique combination.
5
Traits of Creative People
  • Awareness of creativity
  • Originality
  • Independence
  • Risk-taking
  • Problem redefining
  • Energy
  • Curiosity
  • Attraction to complexity

6
Traits of Creative People
  • Artistic
  • Open-mindedness
  • Need time alone
  • Perceptiveness
  • Concentration
  • Humor and ability to regress
  • Childlike qualities

7
  • Except you become as a little child


8
Modes of Thinking
  • Convergent - leads to one and only one acceptable
    answer
  • Divergent - searches for many different ways of
    defining or interpreting a problem

9
Stages of the Creative Process
  • Preparation/brainstorming
  • Incubation
  • Illumination
  • Verification/communication

10
Schools that Nurture Creativity
  • Personnel strive to reduce stress.
  • Process is valued over product.
  • Time limits are flexible.
  • Free, open atmosphere encouraging
    self-expression.
  • Ideas are shared.
  • Competition/external rewards minimized.
  • Creativity, imagination, and fantasy are valued.

11
Characteristics of Play
  • Play is voluntary and intrinsically motivated.
  • Play is symbolic, meaningful, and
    transformational.
  • Play actively involves the players.
  • Play is rule-bound.
  • Play pleasurable.

12
Why is play important?
  • Enables children to make sense of their world
  • Develops social and cultural understandings
  • Allows children to express their thoughts and
    feelings
  • Fosters flexible and divergent thinking
  • Provides opportunities to meet and solve real
    problems
  • Develops language and literacy skills and
    concepts

13
Teachers Roles in Childrens Play
  • Observers
  • Collaborators
  • Planners
  • responders
  • Models
  • Mediators
  • Monitors of Childrens Safety

14
What is art?
  • Are the childrens responses predetermined?
  • Will one childs work look nearly identical to
    anothers?
  • Who is the activity for?
  • Will the childs efforts lead to the creation of
    a new form that is satisfying to the child at his
    or her level of development?

15
Common Errors in Teaching Art
  • Advocating formulas and requiring conformity in
    copying
  • Mistaking lack of guidance for freedom
  • Unduly emphasizing copying and neatness

16
How Children Learn Through Art
  • To observe carefully and record observations
  • To organize ideas and express their feelings
  • To work with purpose and maintain a focus
  • To solve problems through trial and error
  • To respect themselves and their achievements
  • To communicate feelings and ideas with others
  • To discover own point of view
  • To appreciate others points of views
  • To appreciate different cultural groups
  • To create change using wide range of media
  • To make aesthetic discoveries and evaluations

17
Responding to Childrens Art
  • Treat child artists their work with respect
  • Discuss artistic elements
  • Follow childs lead Tell me about...
  • Ask child appropriate questions
  • What is it made of?
  • What does it represent?
  • For whom was it made?
  • What is the most interesting thing to you?
  • Where did your idea for this art come from?

18
Displaying Childrens Art
  • Place at childrens eye level
  • Rotate art regularly
  • Utilize a variety of spaces
  • Add finishing touches such as frames
  • Recognize every childs effort
  • Children should be able to take home

19
Discipline Based Art Education (DBAE)
  • Art Production the making of art
  • Art History acquiring knowledge about the
    contributions artists and art make to culture and
    society
  • Art Criticism responding to and making
    judgments about the properties and qualities that
    exist in works of art
  • Aesthetics the philosophy of art - discovering
    and understanding the varieties of meanings and
    values of art

20
Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Fine Arts
  • Perception
  • Creative expression/performance
  • Historical/cultural heritage
  • Response/evaluation

21
Assumptions about Childrens Art - True or False?
  • Artistic ability unfolds naturally and children
    are best left to follow their own inclinations.
  • Producing art is an emotional process rather than
    a cognitive one.
  • Art is valued primarily because it allows
    children to act out their feelings.
  • Any sensory experience is an art experience.
  • Artworks need to be produced in a solitary
    fashion, otherwise children will copy the work
    of their peers.
  • The primary purpose of art projects in school is
    and should be to make gifts or holiday ornaments.

22
Figure 8.2 The Twenty Basic Scribbles (Really)
23
Figure 8.3 Four Stages in Childrens Drawings
24
Establishing Rules Limits in ECE Art Programs
  • Decide on a few important general rules
  • Limit the number of children at art center
  • Wear protective clothing
  • Teach children how to use and care for art tools
  • Model the importance of conserving materials
  • Teach children to share supplies and respect
    others
  • Demonstrate how to clean up after each art
    activity

25
Develop a Childs Vocabulary of Art
  • Encourage children to discuss the artwork
    first in ordinary language.
  • Introduce the vocabulary in contest.
  • Use accurate, appropriate vocabulary.

26
Art Materials Should
  • Extend childrens experience.
  • Be plentiful.
  • Be accessible.
  • Be age-appropriate.
  • Be of high quality.

27
Cross-curricular Connections
  • Media Technology
  • Mathematics Science
  • Language Literacy
  • Social Studies, Health Nutrition

28
Cultural Ethnic Diversity in the Arts Helps
Children Understand
  • the relevance and significance of art in human
    experience
  • the perspectives posed by people of various
    backgrounds
  • the commonality and diversity of humankind
  • the childs personal power as a creator of and
    responder to art

29
Basic Features of a Creative Environment
  • Climate - feeling emanating from classroom
  • Space - degree which room contributes to active,
    creative thinking
  • Time - influence of classroom schedule

30
Music/Movement Framework
  • All children have potential
  • Each child brings unique interests/abilities
  • Children have critical thinking skills
  • Children have diverse experiences
  • Children should experience exemplary musical
    sounds, activities, and materials
  • Dont pressure to perform on stage
  • Activities should be enjoyable
  • Safe, pleasant environment
  • Diverse learning opportunities essential
  • Children need effective, enthusiastic models

31
Uses of Music and Movement
  • Begin the day/greet one another
  • Create warm, positive atmosphere
  • Establish particular mood
  • Ease activity transitions
  • Link arts with other subject areas
  • Focus childrens attention
  • Make special events more special
  • Celebrate diversity
  • Social development
  • Relaxation
  • Sharpen thinking skills
  • Promote creative expression
  • Bring day or event to satisfying conclusion

32
Educational Value of Music and Movement
  • Cognitive skills
  • Social skills
  • Perceptual skills
  • Psychomotor skills
  • Affective skills
  • Cultural skills
  • Aesthetic skills

33
How Music and Movement Develop
  • Enactive Stage
  • Iconic Stage
  • Symbolic Stage

34
Principles of Music Program
  • Base program on four elements
  • Balance of groupings
  • Invite children to respond in own ways
  • Build self-confidence
  • Use personalized encouragement
  • Build music/movement vocabularies
  • Encourage spontaneity
  • Join with your students in music experiences
  • Be inclusive of all children

35
Teaching Strategies
  • Use your voice
  • Use recorded music
  • Use simple instruments

36
The First Amendment Religious Clauses
Congress shall make no law respecting an
establishment of religion, or prohibiting the
free exercise thereof …
  • Establishment Clause
  • Free Exercise Clause

37
How should I teach about religion?
  • The schools approach to religion is academic,
    not devotional.
  • The school strives for student awareness of
    religions, but does not press for student
    acceptance of any religion.
  • The school sponsors study about religion, not the
    practice of religion.
  • The school may expose students to a diversity of
    religious views, but may not impose any
    particular view.
  • The school educates about all religions it does
    not promote or denigrate religion.
  • Informs students about beliefs does not seek to
    conform students to any particular belief.

38
Divergent Materials for Creative Expression
lead to multiple uses and invite a variety of
creative responses
  • Enable children to use their imaginations
  • Offer children latitude for creating
  • Encourage cooperation
  • Have no right or wrong uses, build esteem
  • Process-oriented

39
Types of Materials
  • Skill/Concept Materials
  • Gross Motor Materials
  • Manipulative Materials
  • Construction Materials
  • Self-Expression Materials
  • Natural and Everyday Objects

40
Games and Young Children
  • Infants and Toddlers - social interaction games
  • Preschoolers - running/chasing games, simple
    spinning games of chance, simple sorting,
    guessing and matching games, simple board games
  • Kindergarten, Primary Students - games with rules

41
What is a game?
  • Agreed-upon set of rules
  • Pre-determined outcome
  • Players assigned specific roles
  • Sanctions for violations
  • Competition and winning

42
The Value of Games
  • Develop cooperative behaviors and strategic
    thinking
  • Practice autonomy
  • Engage in problem solving
  • Supervise and correct each other

43
Competition versus Cooperation
  • Some early childhood educators think competitive
    games are developmentally inappropriate for young
    children
  • Others believe that games can be appropriate and
    beneficial with proper guidelines

44
The EC Teachers Role in Games
  • Plan and introduce games
  • Allow children to modify rules
  • Support the childrens initiatives as they invent
    their own games

45
What is Creative Drama (Enactment)?
  • Emerges from the spontaneous play of young
    children
  • Uses art of theater to enhance awareness of self,
    others, world
  • Children act as if their imaginary world were
    the actual world
  • Dramatizations represent feelings, thoughts, and
    actions

46
Enactment allows children to
  • Assume roles, create dialogue, feel emotions, use
    their bodies and make decisions
  • Use their past and present experiences to talk
    about and solve problems
  • Develop knowledge of appropriate roles, actions,
    and behaviors
  • See others points of view
  • Try out new and emerging skills
  • Explore the forms and function of language

47
Forms of Enactment
  • Informal drama
  • Story or interpretive drama
  • Formal or scripted drama

48
Importance of Creative Drama in EC Classroom
  • Values and respects childrens individuality and
    creative expressiveness
  • Offers means for cooperative learning and
    teamwork
  • Enables children to make abstract situations
    meaningful and personalize real-life situations
  • Provides opportunities to be spectators and
    actors
  • Develops literacy skills
  • Develops thinking skills
  • Strengthens self-concept

49
Prop Boxes
  • Promote experiences related to a theme
  • Extend and sustain theme play
  • Increase opportunities for family involvement
  • Provide opportunities to enact familiar roles
  • Develop career awareness

50
Pantomime
  • Children use gestures and movement to communicate
    ideas, feelings, and actions
  • Children use no words, only actions

51
Why use puppets?
  • Add life to classroom
  • Natural vehicle for creativity, imagination, and
    self-expression
  • Help children convey feelings, emotions, values,
    and ideas
  • Encourages self-expression, storytelling,
    improvisation, and enactment
  • Enhances risk taking and building confidence in
    speaking abilities

52
Story Drama - type of interpretive drama based on
familiar stories, poems, fables, or original
stories
  • Supports understanding of story structure
  • Offers natural and authentic form of literacy
  • Improves reading comprehension
  • Promotes speaking, listening, critical, and
    creative reading skills by interpreting familiar
    material
  • Heightens students interest in reading
  • Enables children to experience the feelings and
    behaviors of others.

53
Outdoor Playgrounds
  • Space Requirements
  • 75 Square Feet per child
  • Play zones (tricycle riding separated from
    climbing)
  • Variety of Surfaces
  • grass
  • hardtop
  • mulch, pea gravel or cushioned fall areas
  • sand
  • water
  • hills/mounds and flat areas
  • shade

54
Types of Outdoor Play
  • Exercise
  • Constructive
  • Dramatic
  • Games with Rules

55
Playground Space
  • Spaces for individuals and small groups
  • Spaces for children of different ages
  • toddlers
  • preschoolers
  • elementary-aged children
  • Spaces for walking, running, skipping
  • Storage area
  • Easy access to toilets and drinking fountains
  • Accessibility for special needs children

56
Spaces for Children of Different Ages at the
Plano Train Playground
  • Children under 5
  • Children from6 - 12 Years of Age

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Celebration Park
  • Water Play
  • Ramps for special needs/strollers
  • Dramatic Play

60
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Storage at Northaven Coop
  • Riding Toys
  • Balls,
  • Sand Water Toys
  • Hoops
  • Moveable Materials

63
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64
Childs Play at Bachman Lake
  • Rotary Project
  • Geared to Children with Special Needs

65
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Materials
  • Complexity - number of possibilities the
    material offers children
  • Diversity - number of ways material can be
    used, regardless of complexity
  • Loose Parts - movable pieces that can be
    manipulated and used to improvise providing
    flexibility, diversity, novelty, and challenge
  • boards, ramps, tires, tools, nails
  • balls

68
Materials
  • Offers opportunities for physical, cognitive,
    and social development
  • Equipment for active and quiet play
  • Materials for dramatic play
  • Materials for gross motor development
  • Sand area with cover

69
Rainbow Connection Playground
  • Funds raised with Silent Auction
  • Designed by architect in church
  • Built by parents and church members

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Outdoor Waterplay in Guatemala
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Safety
  • Equipment is in good repair, free of sharp
    edges and in good working order
  • Fences at least 5 feet high with lockable gates
  • 8 - 10 inches of sand, mulch, pea gravel, or
    natural fiber
  • Litter free

74
Religion and the Public Schools
  • A Teachers Guide

75
Knowledge about religions is not only
characteristic of an educated person, but is also
absolutely necessary for understanding and living
in a world of diversity. National Council for
the Social Studies
76
How should I teach about religion in the public
school setting?
  • The schools approach to religion is academic,
    not devotional.
  • The school strives for student awareness of
    religions, but does not press for student
    acceptance of any religion.
  • The school informs students about various
    beliefs it does not seek to conform students to
    any particular belief.

77
How should I teach about religion in the public
school setting?
  • The school sponsors study about religion, not the
    practice of religion.
  • The school may expose students to a diversity of
    religious views, but may not impose any
    particular view.
  • The school educates about all religions it does
    not promote or denigrate religion.

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