UNESCO International Arts Education Week 19- 25 May 2014
International Arts Education week is happening on 19 - 25 May and this year's celebration theme is Arts for Peace! To help celebrate the arts and arts education, the World Alliance for Arts Education (WAAE) has produced an advocacy tool kit for arts educators. We are happy that it is available here for download and encourage you to share and pass it on!
Here's a message from Sir Ken Robinson, author, speaker, and international advisor on education in the arts to government, non-profits, education, and arts bodies.
People everywhere have dreams of peace. These dreams can face deep challenges. Some of the deepest are to do with our different ways of being. They are cultural. Arts education has unique roles in meeting these challenges. Why is that?
As human beings, we are born with immense powers of imagination and creativity. Through the languages we speak, the things we make, and the customs we practice, we generate the many different cultures that humanity inhabits. As a result, we all live in two worlds – the world around us and the world within us. We experience both through the filters of our ideas and the tones of our feelings. Some of these we owe to our own dispositions and some to the cultures that envelop us.
What have the arts to do with this? We form our worlds not only in words and numbers but in sounds and movement, in images and designs, in rhythms and harmonies. We may call some of these art but they are all part of a larger impulse to understand ourselves and each other. Effective arts education can help us do both.
What has this to do with peace? Peace is a state of safety and well-being. It is living without the fact or fear of oppression. Peace is not a material state but a spiritual one. To promote peace around us, we must find peace within us. Our music and images, our poems and performances are ways of exploring some of our deepest ideas and feelings. Peace does not mean lack of passion for our own ways of being. It means compassion for others. Engaging with the arts of others is the most vibrant way of seeing and feeling the world as they do.
It’s been said that there is no path to peace: that peace is the path. And so it is. Congratulations then to everyone involved in International Arts Education Week for taking this path together and for knowing that the first and most important step is to believe in this dream and the power of education and the arts to make it real.
Sir Ken Robinson, Los Angeles, May 2014