Yesterday, April 1st was an exciting day for me because I helped to facilitate a program called PAINTS, in our local school in Advocate Harbour, Nova Scotia. This is offered through Visual Arts Nova Scotia. Professional Artists, go into the schools over a period of weeks and facilitate art workshops.
Many moons ago, way back in the 70s, I was attending the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design as a student in Fine Arts and the Art Education program. At this time art was beginning to become seriously cut throughout Nova Scotia in the schools. This was very disturbing to artists and art educators alike, and we began to fight back against these cuts. Seemingly to no avail, as the cut backs continued.
Fast forward years ahead, there where fewer and fewer art teachers to be found in the Nova Scotia educational school system, primarily in secondary school. However, I am overjoyed and heartened to learn that this is finally turning around and art is now being reintroduced into the schools.
The higher ups and I am certain teachers themselves are seeing how crucial the creative arts are as one of the basics, as a way to integrate and directly affect academic learning. The creative arts not only augment academic learning but improves it substantially, exceeds the average person's expectation and it is how to make learning come alive.
The children I am working with right now, are in grade three to five and are so much fun, astute and an absolute delight. They need no convincing to understand how and why art it is important to them inside and outside of their school classrooms.
Their teacher who I am working with, is a highly intelligent and very creative person. We share similar ideas about teaching and creativity. She is a real joy to work with, and I am so very grateful to be involved with this wonderful program PAINTS.