Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Seeing it differently: New perspectives in art education with international students at Radford

Two Radford students discuss perspectives with a student teacher from Mexico.
Random objects, creative name badges and mask making brought new insights when Radford University art education majors shared an interactive class with nine students from Mexico.

On the Covington Center classroom front desk sat four items: a glue gun, a rock, a hammer and a stuffed animal. Discussing the similarities and difference among these items, RU students mingled with their international guests.

In this exercise, Richard Bay, professor of art education, explained such activities used in an elementary classroom setting help school children increase their perspectives through the comparison of the objects’ textures, weight, volume, size, materials and usage.

Seemingly different items have more in common than one might expect, much like the two cultures that combined during this unique class opportunity. The inverse can be true as well. It is all about perspective. Through this class, both cohorts gained a deeper understanding about each other’s perceptions and cultures.

“When RU students interact with international students, they acquire a different set of skills,” said Charlene Dandrow, associate director of the Language and Cultural Institute at Radford University (LCI@RU). “They develop an important 'literacy' that enables them to successfully engage with diversity, which nowadays is a crucial skill to have in the competitive global market.”

Read more about the visit.

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