24. Arts Integrated Education Musings
Talking Hands Talking Feet is working for a time when Arts Integrated Education becomes the standard rather than the rare exception. The crisis of education in our time coincides with a greater crisis: Simply stated, the industrial/technological era paradigm has become obsolete and irrelevant in the face of the greater needs of the 21st century. The factory model of education aimed at turning out technologically competent and economically competitive individuals DOES NOT address the greater needs of humanity in our time. The root of the word crisis means change.
Change begins with our perception of what it means to be human.
Humans are not square with sharp edges. We are round.
Humans are not hard mostly. We are mostly soft.
Humans are not cold. We are warm.
Human minds are not linear. The human mind is multi-dimensional.
Humans are not solid. We are mostly fluid.
The earth we live on is not dead. The earth is ALIVE.
No one can argue with these statements and yet a predominant perception of the world has been: box-like, hard, solid, linear and cold (isolating), treating the Earth as if it were not alive; rather than round, soft, fluid, multi-dimensional and warm (inclusive), respecting the life of the Earth and all its inhabitants. Some may say – that is just the masculine/feminine dichotomy which is the nature of our cosmology. O.K… yes, true, however there is a lot of evidence that we have entered the beginnings of a new time wherein we humans face certain crucial CHOICES.
For example, we now have the choice to move out of an era of largely RED oriented behavior into an era of BLUE oriented opportunity. To change from the RED compartmentalized, masculine natured paradigm to the BLUE integrated, feminine natured way of things… from RED to BLUE. (This is simply one way of looking at it.)
We need both of course, the RED and the BLUE. That is why arts integrated education is so significant! The true genius and virtuosity of human beings simply cannot thrive in an education environment that shuts down the natural human faculties. How do we make the shift to a more encouraging and supportive ‘system’?
First, to recognize the need for change; not alteration, but fundamental change.
Second, to be open to new learning oneself.
Third, pay a lot of attention to the children who seem to carry the seeds of a very different way of learning and perceiving. Let them teach us! And then provide all the encouragement and value and opportunity you can muster, because they need our support, recognition, standards and guidance.