Global creativity: intercultural "hands-on" workshops for pre-service primary art teachers

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    This seminal paper is presented against the background of a "hands-off" approach to teaching visual arts in most of the Western world where visual arts education is often considered by the school community as peripheral to the real "mission" of education. Most scholars agree that the role of pre-service teachers in the twenty-first century is to develop creative thinking and action in children. However limited research has been conducted into this area of study. The basic aim of this study is to use arts-based research inquiry to investigate Australian primary pre-service teachers' situated knowledge, experiences, and implicit theories using empirical and interpretive data. In this small-scale arts-based research inquiry a mixed-method approach was developed using multiple case studies, a questionnaire, participant observations, semi-structured interviews and critical friends groups (collaborations with artists). In order to understand how "creativity" is fostered in pre-service teachers, artist-led intercultural "hands-on" workshops were used in both formal and informal settings. The data analysis revealed that pre-service teachers' visual arts practices are influenced mainly by inconsistent implicit theories on "creativity" and are often limited by access to the necessary skills and knowledge needed to effectively teach visual arts education. The study revealed that 80% of the cohort felt limited in their confidence to teach visual arts education indicating that they lacked the necessary prior knowledge needed to effectively teach visual arts education. These findings positively correlate with the qualitative semi-structured interviews conducted with twelve of the final-fourth year pre-service teachers who participated in the workshops. Some of the inhibiting factors discussed by preservice teachers were inadequate initial teacher education and limited time to practice new "creativity" teaching approaches during their teacher training. In addition, the paper discusses future recommendations for researchers and policymakers about how to foster "creativity" through new approaches to learning and teaching within the primary educational framework.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEKSIG 2013 conference proceedings
    EditorsNithikul Nimkulrat, Kristina Niedderer, Mark Evans
    Place of PublicationLoughborough, UK
    PublisherLoughborough University
    Number of pages18
    ISBN (Print)9781907382727
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    EventEKSIG International Conference - Loughborough, UK
    Duration: 4 Jul 20135 Jul 2013


    ConferenceEKSIG International Conference
    CityLoughborough, UK


    • global creativity
    • visual arts education
    • the role of pre-service primary teachers


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