LEARNING & INNOVATION RE: 21st Century Skills in Art submitted by L. Girbino


  • I posted a question on one of my Personal Learning Networks, Art Ed 2.0, asking, "So how do we get from rhetoric to implementation? How can we be part of this as art educators?"
  • Withing an hour, I had wonderful responses, and I'm including the best as part of documentation of how this paradigm can work in an art room.
  • fr. Martin Rayala: Three approaches to education are on the table right now:
    Common Core - more specificity about the content of learning (history, science, etc.)
    NCLB - focus on tools for learning (reading, writing, and math)
    P21 (Partnership for 21st Century Skills) - developing problem-solving skills
    If you expand the P21 Skills what you have is "Design Thinking" - problem solving by 1. identifying and clarifying the problem, 2. researching the problem and previous attempts to solve it, 3. Developing criteria necessary for a satisfactory resolution of the problem, 4. Generating possible solutions (brainstorming), 5. Apply the criteria developed in step 3 to possible solutions developed in step 4 to selected the most likely candidate, 6. Generate some prototypes of the selected solution, 7. Present the solution and implement it, 8. Evaluate the results by seeing if it works in the real world.
    This is the standard Design Thinking process but is not really the kind of problem-solving we do in Art. I suggest we add Design to our identity - Art and Design - in order to signal our willingness to address and work to solve real world problems through design education.
  • further, fr. Martin Rayala: "Interestingly, NCLB was actually on the right track but stopped short by not including the rest of the tool set (or intelligences as Howard Gardner famously referred to them). NCLB stopped at linguistic (words) and mathematical (numbers) and failed to include sounds, movement, images, objects, places and experiences. The brain needs to use all those tools to help students learn and NCLB was cutting off a whole lobe of the brain (Occipital) by not including our ability to use images, objects, places and visual experiences to help us learn, think and communicate.
    I know the argument is that because of budgets, time, etc. schools can't do everything but they can do these 8 things and allow the student's brains to use the tools they already have at hand rather than limit them to use only two of the tools."
  • fr. Brian Reverman: "Sometimes tech and design can co-opt this idea (the buzz may be watering down the impact overall as is often the case). At the American School of Bombay we have been working with idea for sometime, taking what in my view the arts naturally bring to the table. While this is an ongoing process you can see what we're doing at ASB Visual Arts - Preparing Students for the 21st Century. This is a collaborative project so we welcome feedback."
  • Finally, awesome Slideshare webinar on 21st c. in ed. w/ resources galore!