A Community Initiative for DevelopingCreative Arts in the Early Years
Creativity in Young Children When considering young children, it is appropriate toadopt a broad, democratic definition of creativity. In thisway, every child can be considered to have creativepotential and to be capable of creative expression.(Sharp, 2004)
The hundred languages of thechild UNESCO (Salamanca 1994) argued againstcommodity-orientated education‘Everyone responsible for the care and education of theyoung child has to acquire an abiding respect for thehundred languages of children…..the arts contributeimmeasurably to the quality and quantity of ways inwhich children convey not just feeling but also theyattain their natural creative expression and academicachievement’.
Creative Arts and Childcare inIreland UNICEF study in 2008 puts Ireland in the samecategory as Canada, the last of 25 developed nations(NUPGE 2011) Ireland is well below the international standards(Bertellsman study Irish Times June 4th 2011)
Flowers in the dustVarious initiatives The Irish Pre-School Play Association (IPPA)Founded in 1969 The Centre for Early Childhood Developmentand Education (CECDE) established in 2001 National Council for Curriculumand Assessment (NCCA)
Aistear and SioltaAistear- curriculum frameworkSiolta- number of principles and 16 standardsStandard 6 focuses on play‘Promoting play requires that each child has ample time toengage in freely available andaccessible, developmentally appropriate and well-resourced opportunities forexploration, creativity……’(Siolta 2006)
Creative Arts (CA)at Cork Institute of TechnologyEarly Years Education degree course started in 2005 Mandatory module in all 3 yrs of the degree program Only 3rd level Institute in Munster to offer CAs as amandatory module for entire degree program Delivered by 3 specialists in Music, Art andDrama (MAD) for Early Years
CAs program at CIT providesstudents with: practical skills in all 3 areas- MAD appropriate teaching strategies to raise the profile ofthe CAs tools to integrate CAs into other subjects making itcentral to the holistic learning experience of the child means by which they can use the CAs to promoteconfidence, creativity, imagination and individuality inthe early learner
Integration of the CreativeArtsCreativityMusicArtDramaWell beingIdentity &Belonging CommunicationExploring &Thinking
Community InitiativeThe following nine preschools, crèches and schools participated in this communityinitiative in Cork city and county St Ann’s Nursery, Sharman Crawford street. Peapods, Boreenmanna Road Farranree Steeping Stones, Farranree Naoinra na Og Siog, Ballincollig Wee Wisdom, Fermoy Glasheen School, Glasheen HighCare Childcare, Ballincollig Village Montessori, Blackrock KinderCare, Ballincollig
Students’ Feedback I gained a huge amount of self confidence The experience of being involved in the children’screative process. We were able to apply what we have done in class in apractical child centred setting. It taught me how it is important to engaged with thechildren when working with them creativity.
Students’ Feedback We became very aware the amount of preparationneeded when developing the children’s creative skills. This was a challenged but highly rewarding experience. It challenges and questions your own ability to becreative. I finally came to the realization that is not about the finalproduct, but it is about the process. It is about makingsure the children are supported to make their owndecisions to help build on their independence andcreativity.
Recommendations for futurecommunity initiatives Based on students’ feedbacks – that they get thename of the school and class they will be working withat the beginning of the semester so that they can meetwith the children and develop a rapport. Lecturers/students to develop closer links with thecentres. For this community initiative to be an integral part of thecourse curriculum.
Creative Arts assessments inother years EYE 1- develop a series of lesson plans that supportscreativity as a process. EYE 2 – apply what they have learned by conductingworkshops within a variety of settings in thecommunity. EYE 3 – interviews where they show off their creativearts portfolios that they have developed over the threeyears of the degree course.
Misconceptions about Creativity Creativity is related to specific arts subjects. Children can easily transfer knowledge and learningfrom one area to another. Creativity is about always having fun and the childrenenjoying themselves. You are born creative and it cannot be acquired. Free play and unstructured arts activities is the waychildren develop their creativity.
Want to Participate?Contact us at CIT Julie Meighan firstname.lastname@example.orgOr Evelyn Egan-Rainy email@example.com