All I wanted was to do art with kids — to teach and empower — to see their sweet faces light up with every new discovery. My young students thrived when they got the “how to” information they craved. And while teaching children how to draw, they taught me — again and again — how important art is to them. In my book, Being Visual, I talk about my 20 years experience teaching young kids how to draw by using their preferred learning style. The classes and teaching method were popular and effective, so I made a business out of it. But it’s never really been about the business.
Power of Art
I love the way visual kids express themselves, learn problem solving, see multiple solutions to problems – and the impact the arts have on developing minds. Meet Terra. She makes me want to be 16 again.
Terra is the head of the Menomonee Falls High School art department and I want to be a student in her classes. Recently I had a tour of the art classrooms, saw student work and enjoyed Terra’s classroom stories and favorite assignments.
This is one of my favorite speakers, Kenneth Robinson. He’s an author, educator, and creativity expert, he speaks internationally, challenging us to rethink our school systems, cultivate creativity and protect the arts.
You’ll appreciate the message in this video – but also that it is so visual – because its been illustrated! The images make his thoughts even more powerful.
Art has long been perceived as a fun activity, with little academic impact or value in an educational system focused on literacy and test scores. Because of this misconception, art programs across the country are being eliminated in staggering numbers. While the cuts may help the bottom line, our students are paying the price. Research has proven time and time again, that art is essential to academic success, and many of our children can’t learn without it.
Over the Holidays, the Elgin Community Network organized a Community Thanksgiving Dinner. They collected turkey and dessert donations, recruited volunteers and expected to feed close to twelve hundred people a free Thanksgiving dinner. Our family volunteered for the morning shift, excited for the opportunity to give of ourselves.
I’m back from vacation and getting ready to travel again. This time I am en route to Cleveland to promote the Being-Visual philosophy on Art Education in a live taping of a segment at Fox 8 Cleveland and to present a speech on “What Every Parent Should Know About their Child’s Education” at the Agnon School.
First stop Fox News. I have been invited to appear on WJW-TV – Fox News in the Morning on Wednesday, October 3. During our session I’ll talk about what it means to be a visual learner, ways your child may be struggling in school and how you can help. I’ll share some ideas for making learning more visual and tactile.