It is a question that’s frequently raised when speaking about our chosen profession throughout the table. There’s an expectation that if we educate the arts then we need to be practising artists.
It’s a presumption that does not appear to exist in additional instruction avenues. We don’t presume that the English instructor is composing the upcoming great book. However, an assumption is that arts instructors display or perform their artwork.
In line with the leading advocate of imagination and the arts, Sir Ken Robinson, there was and still is a hierarchy of topics which exist in most Western colleges.
In the top are math and languages, followed with the humanities and, in the base, the arts. That is a bit unusual given that arts instructors are needed to finish the very same years of instruction as non-arts teachers.
Some come to instruction after completing their fine arts diploma, but some finish an education diploma with a few of the arts because their instruction procedure.
We can ask whether that presumption of this arts instructor as celebrity is an effort to boost the standing of teaching the arts in our universities. Do these topics require professionals to be educated effectively?
The low condition of the arts in universities has caused myriad struggles. And as “optional” subjects they’re not always prioritised, particularly at a high-stakes testing regime that emphasises literacy and numeracy as core elements of the educational system.
By way of instance, in NSW alone nearly 9,000 students are enrolled in visual arts annually 12, near 5,000 in both music and drama, and just 900 in dancing.
While reduced when compared with mandatory subjects like English, for which roughly 60,000 pupils sit their Higher School Certificate, these numbers continue to rise due in part to committed arts instructors in our secondary schools.
There’s not much doubt that the arts need specialised resources and facilities, so financing becomes still another challenge.
And, clearly, there’s the dilemma of the well-trained arts instructor who has to have certain artistic abilities so as to assist their pupils acquire a greater degree of proficiency in their chosen art form.
Early career teachers confront plenty of challenges, but for arts instructors they face the extra anticipation they are keeping a private arts training the music instructor is in a group, the drama instructor directs plays, along with the art instructor is working in their second Archibald entry.
But, little research exists detailing precisely how many educators practise their preferred art form out the faculty.
Beginning in 2013, the investigators have been pursuing 100 Victorian graduate artwork educators to research if new arts instructors create artwork and, even when they do, what affect it has in their own teaching. However, do teaching and making art require exactly the exact same set of abilities.
A teacher should get a certain command of an artwork to instruct it. A dance instructor has to understand more about the choreography of dancing.
A music instructor has to understand how to produce music. The arts aren’t core components they’re electives. Yes, performers have this fire.
However, to assert that a individual needs to become an artist to instruct the arts suggests the mastery of artistic abilities and processes equates to an understanding of present pedagogy when, in fact, they are sometimes mutually exclusive.
Simply because someone is an artist does not automatically signify they are, or will be, a fantastic teacher.
Educating As An Art Form
Maybe we must move this conversation in a different direction. Very good teachers need passion, imagination and creativity.
Arts instructors, whether artists or not, have made a choice to become arts teachers. They don’t want to live the life span of an artist, to feel pressured to make, to pursue museums and theaters, to reside off sales and commissions.
They wish to become a teacher, to inspire an appreciation for the arts, to inspire their pupils to achieve a greater degree of proficiency, and also to provide assurance and life skills for their pupils.