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Big Ideas

Dr. Marilyn Stewart is a co-author of Explorations in Art K-8, she is also the series editor for the Art Education in Practice Series by Davis Publications. In Rethinking Curriculum in Art, from the Art Education in Practice Series, Dr. Stewart suggests that enduring ideas are foundational for curriculum in art. She states that they exceed any one subject matter or discipline and can make connections to many disciplines. Dr. Stewart goes on to say that she refers to enduring ideas but recognizes that the same concept may be exercised under other terminology such as themes, issues and key ideas. She defines enduring ideas as themes, topics or issues that reflect big questions about the human experience and have been investigated over time. They are broad, umbrella-like ideas that guide students in understanding what it means to be human, to live alongside others and in the natural world. Human beings around the world and throughout time have expressed common activities, inclinations and ideas through art. There are connections between those common- alities and the great themes and enduring ideas that make art meaningful.
  • The arts help students develop attitudes, characteristics, and
    intellectual skills necessary to work in a changing society;
  • In works of art there are many problems that have various solutions,
    each different from the other but equally credible;
  • Art conveys knowledge and meaning not learned through the study of
    other subjects. Art education represents a form of thinking and a way of
    knowing based on human judgment;
  • Art is the common thread that ties together all other disciplines;
  • Through out time and across cultures, artists have explored water.
  • Journey.
  • Power.
  • Fear.
  • Through out time and across cultures, people have adorned their bodies. (let's think tattoos and piercings, etc etc!)
  • Artists have explored their personal identities through art making.
  • Objects, Consumption and Disparate Parts of Me;  The objects we own and consume can identify us.