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ERIC Number: ED363547
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Development of Spatial Understanding in Japanese and American Children's Drawings.
Bleiker, Chuck; Marra, Kim
This paper examines art, a discipline that bears striking parallels, and differences, in the way it is practiced and valued in the United States and Japan. In Japan, art is a valued part of the elementary curriculum warranting as much time as science and social studies. In the United States, art is generally thought of as something extra to do if there is time left over from more traditionally academic subjects. In Japan, art is taught systematically through a series of graded textbooks, In the United States, giving the children time and materials is often the method practiced with great variation among classrooms. In this study middle class Japanese and U.S. children of ages 6, 8, or 10 years were given paper and colored pencils and asked to draw a picture of "a mother and father holding hands in a park. Their baby is in front of them and two trees are behind them." Each drawing was scored to correspond to one of four levels: (1) preaxial, (2) uniaxial, (3) biaxial, and (4) integrated biaxial. Despite almost identical compositional scores, there were noticeable differences in appearance between the drawings from the two countries. At 6 years of age, Japanese children drew scenes with more objects than requested. Very few of the U.S. 6-year-olds' drawings showed the same diversity of objects and attention to detail. At age 8, Japanese children attempted to depict objects in three dimensions more often than U.S. children. At 10, Japanese children drew more expressive figures. The findings of the study suggest that conceptual understanding is different from achievement. (DK)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers; Teachers; Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan; United States