|Module Code:||ED8101||ECTS Credits:||5|
The visual arts exist in all societies and both creating and responding to visual art is inherent to the human condition. It is so much part of our lives that we can really only truly appreciate its centrality by imagining its absence. We now appreciate that children’s art engagement is not an automatic consequence of growth and development but rather the result of an active process of exploration and inquiry that cannot occur without some facilitation by adults (Barnes, 2002; Davis; 2008; Koster, 2005).
Creating or responding to visual arts develops visual perception and fine manipulation skills in children from birth to 6 years. It facilitates individual and imaginative artistic expression and embraces the aesthetic dimension of learning. It helps children grow cognitively in relation to problem solving, cause and effect, classifying and sequencing. It aids language development and provides another avenue for self-expression. It develops children’s social and collaboration skills. It provides for the social and emotional dimension for learning. It nurtures creativity (Hurwitz & Day, 2007; Calloway & Kear, 1999; Lyons, 2013; NCCA, 1999).
Creativity helps us to make the most of our lives. Creativity can be valued as a way to live more productively, to cope with difficulties, to discover possibilities and to develop new resilience, perspectives and aliveness in the moment, joy and purpose in life. While creativity is not particular to arts alone, early artistic engagement develops within transferable confidence and competencies to engage creatively in other domains of learning (Connery, 2010; Carilile & Jordan; 2012; Csikszentimalyi, 1996; Desailly, 2012).
This junior freshman module has a particular focus on creativity and the visual arts mode. It examines and evaluates different constructs of creativity and their implications for early childhood education. It explores creative ‘flow’ and surroundings from a visual arts education perspective. It examines the visual arts modes and develops students’ subject connoisseurship, understanding and related skills through active engagement in creating, looking and responding. It examines the value of ‘creative play’ and ‘being creative’ in light of Aistear: the Early Childhood Curriculum Framework for children from 0-6 years. It investigates the junior visual arts primary curricula in light of the younger child’s aesthetic and creative development through participation, repertoire, critical and contextual understandings.
On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
- Justify the centrality of artistic exploration, experimentation and expression in early years education
- Evaluate the value of the social, emotional and aesthetic dimensions of learning in early childhood development
- Critique the impact of children's artistic engagement on their physical, emotional, cognitive and social development
- Compare and contrast different visual arts education paradigms and epistemologies
- Plan informed and high quality artistic educational activities and related experiences for early childhood education settings for children from birth to 6 years
- Devise a plan to foster children's artistic and creative potential in children from birth to 6 years
- Orchestrate visual arts experiences that appeal to, and cultivate the artist in the younger child
- Devise a plan to attain and maintain a creative visual arts pratice in early childhood settings
Method of Assessment
Reflective Folio-Journal (2,000 words accompanied with digital/visual documentation of creative processes)