What Arts in Education Aid Council Values:
Since parents know their children best, their opinions should be regarded when setting policy and making decisions that directly affects their child's education. We value what the community has to say about their specific educational needs and will consider this input in guiding our organization.
Our goal in working with teachers is to assist them in providing a range of learning opportunities which address multiple intelligences that they might not otherwise use. We provide teachers skilled in their field of expertise, and materials that the school budget does not currently cover.
Brain Compatible Learning
We recognize that all children are unique individuals who learn differently and should be respected as such. The current educational system heavily favors left-brain, linguistic, and mathematical reasoning that is easily measured by standardized tests. Scant attention is given to developing right brain, innovative, or creative thinking. Those students who learn best in this mode do not have equal opportunity for success. While all students benefit from complex, interactive learning, by bringing the arts back to public education, creative children are provided meaningful ways to demonstrate their knowledge.
All children should have access to the many cultural wonders of Los Angeles. Since most children attending LAUSD of children attending LAUSD public schools live at or near the poverty line, they do not have the same opportunities that children from affluent families have. AEAC supports the efforts of the schools serving at-risk populations by supplementing field trips to museums, cultural centers, concert halls, and multi-cultural art centers.
Art for Art's Sake
The trend in LAUSD to justify the inclusion of any art program as a way to boost math and reading scores may have some validity. There is a growing body of evidence that the arts contribute to the academic success of at-risk students. While AEAC does believe the arts can open the door to cognitive learning, that is not the primary objective of arts education. The arts have their own content areas of study, and are valuable for their own sake. Since the arts use alternative and authentic learning processes unlike the traditional school methods, students are regularly engaged in higher order and transformative thinking modes.
All children benefit from learning through the arts. Society benefits from the investment in its citizens. Insuring that everyone receives a well-rounded education rich in the arts produces informed, engaged, and compassionate individuals who add value to their communities.
A 21st century education must prepare students to succeed in the new economy. That cannot be accomplished without the kind of thinking that develops from active participation in the arts.
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