The Arts in Children's Lives: Context, Culture, and Curriculum / Edition 1

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Seventeen authors, whose work represents the best of contemporary research and theory on a constellation of issues concerning the role of the arts in children's lives and learning, address critical issues of development, context, and curriculum from perspectives informed by work with children in formal and informal settings. This anthology draws on various cultural and institutional context and traditional and contemporary practices from different parts of the world.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

From the reviews:
"This carefully crafted book is full of insights and destined to become a classic work on early childhood arts education. The fifteen chapters not only enrich our understanding of the role and value of childhood experiences in the arts, but provide a powerful conceptual framework for developing arts education in schools and communities. It is an impressive summary of current scholarship and knowledge on the arts in early childhood, and a book that one puts down refreshed, and with a renewed sense of wonder about the many ways in which the arts can profoundly influence the lives of young children."
(Gary E. McPherson, School of Music and Music Education, The University of New South Wales)
"This collection of thought-full and thought-provoking articles is a "must" in the library of all educators, and especially those with an interest in the contribution of arts experiences to the socio-cultural and artistic development of children."
(Joan Russell, PhD., Faculty of Education, McGill University)
"This book is about getting down to the 'basics' -art, poetry, music, dance and drama- that which comprises the most potent source of young children's learning, and permeates our understanding of culture, development theory and curriculum. Now is the time to look beyond the emergent phases in literacy or numeracy, to how one can emerge with well-developed 'different selves'. The potential for learning in this book is vast-whether scribbling with crayons or producing videos-not just for the very young, but also for the reflective adult as teacher, researcher, policy developer or parent. This cornucopia of the most brilliant authors in the field, beautifully shaped by powerful arts advocates, Bresler and Thompson, engages us in meaningful debate on the arts and demands that we consider where and how and when real learning takes place."
(Regina Murphy, National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, Ireland)

Researchers and practitioners in education and various arts explore the role and significance of the arts in the education of children from ages three through eight. The 15 studies offer balanced coverage of the cultural contexts of early arts experiences, how children's abilities to participate in particular art forms develop and evolve, and art experiences that are artistically authentic and developmentally appropriate. They include literature as one of the arts. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402005541
  • Publisher: Springer Netherlands
  • Publication date: 3/31/2002
  • Edition description: 2002
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 250
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword 1
Prelude 5
I Context Interlude 9
1 Children's contextual art knowledge: Local art and school art context comparisons 15
2 What's to be learned? Comments on teaching music in the world and teaching world music at home 29
3 Becoming Japanese: Manga, children's drawings, and the construction of national character 43
4 The musical cultures of children 57
5 Playing the music: Comparing children's song and dance in Namibian education 71
II Development Interlude 87
6 We begin as poets: Conceptual tools and the arts in early childhood 93
7 Constructing an artistic self: A cultural perspective 101
8 Early childhood musical development 113
9 Drawing together: Peer influence in preschool-kindergarten art classes 129
10 Fictional worlds and the real world in early childhood drama education 139
III Curriculum Interlude 153
11 What we teach is who we are: The stories of our lives 157
12 School art as a hybrid genre: Institutional contexts for art curriculum 169
13 Early childhood literacy education, wakefulness, and the arts 185
14 Pleasure, creativity, and the carnivalesque in children's video production 195
15 Music technology and the young child 215
Afterwords 237
List of Contributors 239
Name Index 245
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