Children as artists: the preschool as a community of creative practice
Cutcher, A & Boyd, W 2016, 'Children as artists: the preschool as a community of creative practice', Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy, vol. 13, no. 1, pp. 5-17.
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Picasso once famously said “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” This visual inquiry is engaged through a community of creative practice in two rural children's centers where the researchers along with 4- and 5-year-old children collaborated to create a large-scale canvas and several smaller artworks developed from the children's shared interests. By investigating the site where uninhibited and intuitive creative practice is expressed—that of early childhood education—the authors explored such questions as “What can we learn from the art making of young children?” and “Why is this important?” In this visual essay, it is recognized that children are indeed artists, rather than merely children who enjoy painting; issues of practice are explored and honored. It is further acknowledged that children are also theorists, experimenting again and again as learning occurs; they are also often our teachers. Collaborating with children as a community of embodied artists honors their creative authority.