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Play and creativity in art teaching

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In Play and Creativity in Art Teaching, esteemed art educator George Szekely draws on his two classic volumes, Encouraging Creativity in Art Lessons and From Play to Art, to create a new book for new times. The central premise is that art teachers are not only a source of knowledge about art but also a catalyst for creating conditions that encourage students to use their own ideas for making art. By observing children at play and using props and situations familiar to them, teachers can build on children’s energy and self-initiated discoveries to inspire school art that comes from the child’s imagination. The foundation of this teaching approach is the belief that the essential goal of art teaching is to inspire children to behave like artists, that art comes from within themselves and not from the art teacher. Play and Creativity in Art Teaching offers plans for the study of children’s play and for discovering creative art teaching as a way to bring play into the art room. While it does not offer a teaching formula or a single set of techniques to be followed, it demystifies art and shows how teachers can help children find art in familiar and ordinary places, accessible to everyone. This book also speaks to parents and the important roles they can play in supporting school art programs and nourishing the creativity of their children.

George Szekely is Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Art Education, University of Kentucky, USA. For his lifetime contributions to art education, he received the Victor Lowenfeld Prize and the Emanuel Barkan Award. He was named a National Treasure by the National Art Education Association and presented with the honor of becoming a Distinguished Fellow.

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