Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Welcome to 2015


Here is a book for your summer arts education reading.
Clark, B., Grey, A., & Terreni, L. (2013). Arts in Early Childhood: Education: Kia tipu te wairua toi – Fostering young children’s creative spirit through the Arts. Auckland: Pearson New Zealand.
Availabe @ Pearson Education
Also available is ecARTnz, the free e-magazine of professional practice for early childhood teachers.This magazine showcases examples of best practice in visual arts education that are currently happening in New Zealand EC centres. There are up to 3 publications per year.  Contributions from teachers, academics, and arts reaserchers are always welcome!
The International Art in Early Childhood Research Journal is  a useful resource: 
The 6th International Art in Early Childhood conference is  in Hong Kong this year (see previous entry)
Have a creative year!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

6th International Art in Early Childhood Conference

The 6th International Art in Early Childhood Conference will be held during
June 11th to June 13th 2015
at the  Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong, China.
The central theme of the conference is
 Art: Home, Schools, Communities

ecARTnz issue 11

The latest issue of ecARTnz is now availabe at

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Lost Streams of Wellington - a Reggio Emilia Inspired Dialogue (REID) workshop

“Children’s lives are shaped by the places they inhabit” (Taylor, 2010, p.1).

Recently, the Wellington-based organisation REID (Reggio Emilia Inspired Dialogues) held the first part of a professional development symposium focussing on the importance of ‘place’ for young children's learning. The session began with a guided walk around places of significance to Mana Whenua in Te Aro by Liz Mellish, a respected elder of the local iwi. Te Wharewaka o Poneke, Te Aro Pa, Te Aro Park and the Waimapihi stream were part of the journey of discovery for participants.

The walk was followed by a seminar on place-based investigations with children by Dr Anne Meade. Participants were encouraged to discuss the places of significance within their own EC community, and to plan for investigations of these with their children.

The day finished with a wonderful visual arts response by participants that I led,  and this work has become the basis for a new exhibition at the Faculty of Education, Victoria University of Wellington.
The exhibition is a developing one as the REID teachers add their children’s work to the show over the next few months. 


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Aotearoa Arts for Peace in Early Childhood

Aotearoa Arts for Peace in Early Childhood
·         What is peace?
·         Why do we need it?
·         What does it look like?
Using the questions above as discussion points, several  EC centres created a ‘peace box’ (or boxes) with the children.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Trash shoe garden

Trash shoe gardens can provide colour, interest, and a bit of whimsy in unattractive and utilitarian spaces. This garden lives at in the Faculty of Education's quad at Victoria University, and was inspired by the book REmida Day (Reggio Children). The shoes were accessed through donations by staff and purchases from second hand shops. Individually and collectively the shoes can inspire and delight.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Sustainable gardens

Sustainable gardens not only contribute to enhancing the natural environment of EC centres, but also to the aesthetics of children's learning spaces. Much has been written about this (see for instance, Artfully Caring for the Environment by Janette Kelly in Kia Tipu Te Wairua Toi - Arts in Early Childhood, or ReMida Day published by Reggio Children), and increasingly EC teachers are developing gardens with children in their centres.

These are photos of gardens developed on London's South Bank in conjunction with the Eden Project, and a once uninspiring area has been transformed into a place of beauty and sustainable functionality. Many of the ideas used in this space involve planting in a variety of different containers and in urban areas, where space is often minimal, container gardening can be a viable and attractive option.