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Artists in Schools programme enables new ways of teaching and learning

01 June 2017   (2 Comments)
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The CCDI has partnered with the Nyanga Arts Development Centre (NADC) to run training with a landmark Artists in Schools programme in the Western Cape. 

The project is an initiative of the National Department of Arts and Culture, the NADC and community-based partners, and it was set up to create sustainable job opportunities in the formal education sector for artists, and to develop the teaching skills of Creative Arts educators in the schools.

According to the NADC, the teachers in our public schools have limited training in the many art forms, so working together with an artist will inspire them to become more creative, to grow in confidence and learn to love and be more knowledgeable about the arts as they discover their own talents.

There are 35 artists working in schools in the communities of Nyanga, Phillipi, Crossroads, New Crossroad and Gugulethu. They include musicians, visual artists, dancers and actors.

As part of their training, the artists took part in a three-day workshop facilitated by the CCDI’s Human Capital Development team Joanne Sandler and Anya Morris from 3 to 5 April.

The workshop included a variety of experiential activities that exposed the artists to new ideas of teaching and learning including Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences. “In order to understand the concept that people learn in different ways, we did an activity that allowed the artists to experience it for themselves, and understand in which areas they were strongest. Afterwards we discussed how they could apply this new understanding to teaching the children in the classroom,” said Anya.

The artists also experienced self-expression through music, dance and conscious movement; learned different ways of storytelling; and looked at case studies that demonstrated the practicalities of managing classrooms and how to effectively manage the learners – and in particular children with barriers to learning.

“The artists are very much in touch with their creativity. We designed the workshop with the aim of enabling them to best deliver their potential in a school environment and to encourage them to think about and discover new ways of using their art form to realise meaningful experience to learning,” said Joanne. “They have amazing artistic talents to share with the children and the workshop simply brought together the creative arts and understanding classroom dynamics.”

According to the artists’ feedback, the group enjoyed the facilitation approach as well as the exposure to new ideas, particularly the theory of multiple intelligences. Furthermore, since the artists usually work in isolation at the schools, they enjoyed the opportunity to collaborate and share their experience with other artists.

Joanne says: “We would like to offer this experience not just to artists but also to other teachers who are facing challenges in bringing creative arts to life. We don’t just see the creative arts – music, dance, drama, visual arts – as stand-alone subjects.

“We would also like to use the arts to make all learning come alive – to see the arts spilling into other areas of teaching, such as understanding the needs of children, their individual uniqueness and how they learn in different ways. This can create a richer learning experience for the children while also nurturing in them essential future-based skills such as critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, imagination and innovation.”


Abrahm Ceramics says...
Posted 21 June 2017
greetings im a khayelitsha pottery and ceramics start up business but overall as an Ceramist i would like to take part in Community skills development.teaching pottery and ceramics making to schools and prisons.could you please assist me as to how to. Abrahm Mashiane 0792977758
Togethercare Prickly pear and Recycles says...
Posted 06 June 2017
I read this column about teaching arts at schools and it is interesting and would like to also share my share my skill with children interested to what I do as an organisation member. Can you please contact if interested by these contact details, tel.number 0787402241

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