How do you teach art without art teachers? Is art integrated learning only for the privileged and gifted? Is the lack of art education a developing nation problem or a global phenomenon due to valuing STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills over creativity? Since 2009, the after-school program, Communities Rising, Inc., has introduced math, English, computers and the joy of art to over one thousand students in rural India. The art program relies on one part-time art teacher and over 100 visiting U.S. and Indian college interns. The students have loved the art experiences and participate with great enthusiasm. Newly discovered artistic talent has resulted in a tremendous increase in self-esteem for some of the students and given them the confidence they need to excel in the classroom. But once the visitors have left, the after-school teachers are ill-equipped to replicate these projects. ATOM | Art to Many arose from belief that these kinds of art experiences should be provided to CR’s students on a consistent and sustainable basis. But the lack of art and design education access to disadvantaged children is not just a developing nation issue, but a global phenomenon as cited by UNESCO (2006). ATOM has been developed for the world’s poorest children who attend schools with no art classes, no art teachers and no money for art supplies. Designed in conjunction with Srishti School of Art, Design & Technology, Bangalore, India and U.S. Fulbright scholar and designer, Kathleen Fritz, ATOM will provide an art integrated curriculum and a system of facilitator training and support for teachers and volunteers with no previous experience teaching art or art and design integrated learning.
|Keywords:||Art and Design Education, Instructional Design, Learning Systems, Social Policy|
Fulbright-Nehru Visiting Scholar, Professional Diploma Program for Product and Interface Design, Srishti School of Art, Design & Technology in Bagalore, India
President, Communities Rising, Inc., Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, USA