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Aesthetic Education Program
EFA's Aesthetic Education Program (AE) is a process-based program that develops perceptual abilities of students in visual and performing arts through greater understanding of art forms, insights into how artists make choices and how these understandings relate to other aspects of life. Through experiential workshops, the program builds critical thinking, supports inquiry-based and student centered learning. Exceptional art works are used as primary resources around which the workshops are jointly designed by a professional Teaching Artist and an AE trained classroom teacher.
For more information, call (269)488-6267 or email Nick Mahmat, EFA's AE Program Coordinator.
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Lincoln Center Institute
EFA designed its Aesthetic Education Program using the model developed by the Lincoln Center Institute for the Arts in Education (LCI). The institute, established in 1975 and located in New York City, is the leading organization in developing skills of observation, inquiry, imagination and creativity through guided encouters with the visual and performing arts. LCI has shared its unique method of aesthetic education with more than 20 million participants representing organizations from around the world.
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Brief History of EFA's AE Program
EFA's Aesthetic Education pilot program began in February 2002 with twelve schools in six school districts. The program became a full LCI affiliate member in 2003. Today, the AE Program serves more than 4,000 students in 24 schools and involves more than 200 trained classroom teachers and 20 Teaching Artists.
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Aesthetic Education philosophy maintains that understanding a work of art exists in the transaction between the viewer and the art object and not in the object itself. AE involves perception, cognition, affect and the imagination. AE philosophy and practice is informed by LCI's Philosopher-in-residence, Maxine Greene, John Dewey, Howard Gardner and others.
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Works of Art
At the heart of AE practice is the work of art, serving as the objects of study in both the visual and performing arts. EFA creates a repertoire season of high-quality works of art. Schools choose a work of art to study in each of the two semesters and have the option of adding a third bonus work of art for the year. EFA's repertoire ranges from the classics to cutting-edge works, drawn from a variety of cultures and disciplines, created by professional artists. View a history of the EFA Rep (PDF). Explore the works of art available on the 2013-2014 EFA Rep at www.efa-rep.org.
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Composed of working professionals from a variety of fine arts disciplines, EFA's staff of 20 AE Teaching Artists partner with trained classroom teachers to guide participants through experiential investigations of a work of art. Teaching Artists work only on works of art in their own discipline. All Teaching Artists undergo a rigorous selection and training process.
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Working in partnership with 200 classroom teachers in Kalamazoo County, the AE Program reaches more than 4,000 each year. A partnership begins with an intensive five-day training: exploring and experiencing AE and choosing the works of art they will use with their students. Educators partner with teaching artists to guide their students through experiential investigations of a work of art.
|Aesthetic Education Program Documents|
Teacher Planning Forms (PDF)
Large Group Brainstorming Dates for 2013-2014 (PDF)
For us, education signifies an initiation into new ways of seeing, hearing, feeling, moving. It signifies the nurture of a special kind of reflectiveness and expressiveness, a reaching out for meanings, a learning to learn.
- Maxine Greene, LCI Philosopher-In-Residence