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ERIC Number: EJ871997
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jul
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 15
ISSN: ISSN-0004-3125
Preadolescents Reflect on Their Drawings of Dance: Students' Voices in Art Learning
Stokrocki, Mary; Eldridge, Laurie
Art Education, v62 n4 p6-12 Jul 2009
Students, during the ages 11 years old to 13 years old ("tweens"), experience a growing desire to think and act independently while caring deeply about being accepted by the group. Tweens may feel vulnerable and self-conscious during the many changes that occur during puberty. These feelings can lead tweens to doubt their abilities and disengage when faced with challenges thought beyond their abilities. Tweens' artistic expression can be constrained as they develop a growing interest in the ability to render an image with convincing realism. For all these reasons, keeping tweens interested, motivated, and engaged can be quite a challenge for art educators. Tweens are more likely to engage with art learning perceived as relevant to them. Curriculum that is relevant to students relates content to their daily lives, interest, experiences, and concerns. Tweens' need to think and act independently leads to voicing their opinions in classrooms. Loss of voice means that students are not allowed to express their experiences, or experiment with positioning and repositioning these subjective experiences within their own identities and within larger social contexts. This context can prevent students from engaging in learning they feel is relevant, inhibit quality student-teacher relationships, discourage engagement with assignments, and decrease feelings of confidence and competency. Artmaking can be an important opportunity for students to articulate a sense of self. Students' identities are built upon and sustained by--often unconscious--identification with media images. By creating opportunities for students to recall experiences and reflect upon these experiences, educators can encourage students to explore complex aspects of identity such as ethnicity and race. This also provides students with choices, meeting tweens' need to exercise their decision-making power and to develop their moral reasoning skills as their intellectual skills grow. This article describes how the voices and abilities of tweens can be expressed and developed through popular culture's music/dance.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A