The paper reveals topical issues of modern art education in Russia; outlines some features of the formal (mandatory) and non-formal (optional) teaching art of modern students; the authors address to the problem of “lifelong art education”. The authors pay attention to the outcomes of the modern students’ art education; make an attempt to find out how important art remains for a modern maturing person after completing a compulsory course at general education school; give examples of the least and most effective innovative and traditional educational technologies, methods and techniques used by teachers of music and visual arts. The authors draw conclusions regarding the interests and preferences of students in the musical and visual arts field, types of diverse artistic, creative, theoretical, and musical practice; show the results of art education impact on students; reveal some pedagogical opportunities that predetermine the success and effectiveness of continuous artistic education of children and youth (a variety of used lessons forms, as well as methods, techniques of teaching art, a positive emotional background of learning, productive creative interaction and cooperation of teachers and students, emotional and semantic drama of art classes, a flexible combination of communication different styles between the teacher and students, etc.).
The system of Russian children and youth art education has rich, historically established traditions, incorporates the accumulated theoretical and practical experience of teaching and educating the young generation with the help of art, various artistic and creative activities. In Russian Federation, art education refers to “the process of person’s mastering and appropriating artistic culture of the nation and mankind, one of the most important ways of developing and forming an integral personality, its spirituality, creative individuality of intellectual and emotional wealth” (Koncepciya xudozhestvennogo obrazovaniya v Rossijskoj, 2001, p.1).
Historically, Russia has developed two main areas of art education for the younger generation. In one case, this is the so-called formal, i.e. compulsory art education. It is implemented mainly in preschool and secondary educational institutions. Thus, the system of modern preschool education in the part of “Art and Aesthetic Development” educational field is aimed at familiarizing growing children with musical, visual activities, theatricalization, forms an aesthetic attitude to the world around them, etc. (Herzog, Sušic, & Benic, 2018; Kisida, Bowen, & Greene, 2018).
At modern Russian school, general art education is implemented in the process of the subject area “Art” compulsory study the subjects “Music” and “Fine (Visual) Arts” from grades 1 to 7 inclusive. In grade 8, these academic subjects are studied on the basis of the approximate curriculum variants as part of the basic general education approximate basic educational program mandatory part implementation. In grade 9, the integrated course “Art” and the subjects “Music”, “Fine Arts” are studied by students in the model curriculum part implementation formed by educational relations participants.
Within the framework of another direction, the introduction to art has an optional (informal) character. It is also being implemented in kindergartens, secondary schools and art schools, secondary special and higher educational institutions of humanitarian and non-humanitarian profile. It is understood that sections in various areas of art in educational institutions, specialized centres of aesthetic or art education, choral, dance and theatre groups, circles of children's and youth creativity, etc., deal with children of different ages in accordance with their immediate desires and interests.
These areas — formal (mandatory) and informal (“optional”) —have had common, different, or identical tasks in different historical periods in the development of Russian art education. Say, for example, about the artistic and spiritual culture development, the growing person diversified development, enriching the students’ emotional and spiritual sphere, expanding the experience of practical, artistic and creative activities in the art various types field, etc. (Pereira & Marques-Pinto, 2018; Davies, Newton, & Newton, 2018; Hu & Wu, 2019). At the same time, we note that two areas presence gave a considerable number of outstanding professional figures in the artistic pedagogy, culture and art.
Attendance at pre-school educational institutions is currently not compulsory for all children of the appropriate age. And therefore, within the framework of this article, formal (compulsory) art education at a secondary school art classes (“Music”, “Fine Arts”), the students’ final results obtained in the course of art objects seven or eight years study, as well as the art education effects some time after the compulsory course completion for children.
Impact effects in the study context imply the delayed results of students’ art education in the form of a interest in art in general (reading books on relevant topics, visiting theatres, concert halls, art galleries, etc.), as well as enthusiasm for any performing or practical activity (performance of vocal and / or instrumental music, musical folklore, electronic musical creativity, visual activity, including computer graphics and design, art, digital photo, creating video clips, etc., theatrical activities, folk, ballroom, contemporary dance, etc.).
At present, the general art education results are naturally associated with the achievement of students’ personal, subject and metasubject results in the framework of the of federal state educational standards implementation. It is obvious that the whole process of achieving such results proceeds in a certain logic, in the conditions of the teacher’s implementation of the corresponding primary and basic general education basic educational programs, using teaching art various forms, methods and techniques, etc. (compare, for example, Haley & Blakeman, 2018; Blagoeva, Karppinen, & Kairavuori, 2019; Yige, 2019). The variability of the final works on art for the basic school course is allowed.
At the same time, in accordance with the mandatory part of the curriculum and part of the curricula formed by the educational process participants, the art education at school for most students ends after seven or eight years of study. As a rule, already in the 9th grade, completing the basic general education level, no compulsory study of the subjects “Visual Arts”, “Music” or the integrated course “Art” is required. From this point on, compulsory art education is not provided for, but students have the opportunity to continue it “at will”, in accordance with their own priorities in any field of art, artistic interests and hobbies.
However, the results of the growing person education, including an artistic person, are not limited only to mastering a compulsory course at general education school. The well-known idea of “education through life”, as well as the art importance, its influence on a person, actualize the search for causes, the study of factors and conditions that promote or hinder further, continuous growing students art education (Stukalova, 2016; Gibson, 2018; Usal & Buyurgan, 2018).
Among the most significant effects of art we will highlight such as the development of personality creative potential, ethical principles and aesthetic ideals, socio-cultural children and youth adaptation to prevent, if necessary, correct antisocial behaviour, form a culture of interethnic communication and respect for the world different nations artistic traditions (Labor, 2018; Clarke & Basilio, 2018).
The problem is not limited only to the above but is also caused by the urgent need for continuous replenishment of the viewers and listeners artistically developed audience, concern for future adults to understand their role in preserving the past generations artistic heritage, preserving monuments of world history and culture.
The main research questions are as follows: What “from art education” remains in the life of a growing school student after completing a compulsory course at secondary school? What artistic knowledge, practical skills and abilities, interests and preferences, enthusiasm for any kinds of diverse artistic and creative activities remain with students after a certain time (from one to three years)? What innovative and traditional pedagogical technologies, methods and techniques used by the teacher best contribute to or do not contribute to the future life of a maturing person “along with art”?
Purpose of the Study
The study is aimed at studying the general art education effects on modern students, identifying preferences and interests of students in the art and artistic and creative activities field after completing the compulsory school course study, determining the pedagogical possibilities predetermining the children and youth continuous art education success and effectiveness.
During the study, the following methods were used:
Conversations with music and visual art teachers about the applied forms, methods and techniques of teaching art in primary and basic general art education priorities and diversity.
Particular attention was paid to the use of the contemporary information and communication technologies in the teaching, organization and content of independent, artistic, creative and design and research activities in art classes.
Analysis of the students’ compulsory art education results in the subjects "Music" and "Fine Arts" for the basic school course, as well as the study of students' preferences when choosing options for the final work.
A variety of theoretical papers were also considered, in the form of messages, presentations, etc. Specially studied and the artistic, practical and creative activities final results variety.
Purposeful pedagogical observation concerning the identification and specificity of the teaching art traditional and innovative forms, methods and techniques used at secondary school by a teacher. At the same time, the music and art teachers’ communication style with students, as well as the classes’ emotional background, were specifically considered.
Analysis of the of students’ art education delayed results. This implied direct study and information systematization obtained as students surveys result after a certain period of time, from one to three years.
The study was conducted over a number of years (2014–2016, 2017–2018). Throughout the experiment, 326 students, 9 music and visual art teachers took part in it, including from general educational institutions of the city of Moscow (General Educational Department of the State Budgetary Professional Educational Institution of the City of Moscow “College of Musical and Theater Art named after G.P. Vishnevskaya”, State budgetary educational institution “Gymnasium # 1619 named after M.I. Tsvetaeva”, state budgetary educational institution “School # 1357 diversified complex "Bratislavskii").
Special attention was paid to students entering the Pre-vocational Education Department of the Federal State Budgetary Educational Institution of Higher Education “Academy of Watercolors and Fine Arts by Sergey Andriaka” (2016 - 2018).
Quantitative data were obtained using the method of expert estimates. In the study process, final works performance unsatisfactory results upon the music and visual arts study completion at secondary school were not obtained. Note that this remained outside the scope of the study.
When analyzing the students’ compulsory art education results in the subjects “Music” and “Fine Arts” for the basic school course, studying and systematizing the children interests and preferences with the allowable choice of options for the final work the following facts were revealed.
Children with sufficiently developed special abilities (in the field of visual and musical activities), chose and carried out the final work of a practical nature (32% in the fine arts; 36% in music).
Moreover, in most cases, students without the help of a teacher, independently determined for themselves the themes of the final work (24% in the visual arts; 22% in music). 16% of students individually performed final work on music, 18% - on fine arts. In other cases, students preferred joint collective-creative activity, in groups or in pairs, in ensembles (while playing music).
On the subject “Visual Arts”, students made sketches, creative works from nature or from memory in various artistic techniques; made any products in the art crafts style; designed cards, posters, booklets, covers for their favourite books or notebooks, business cards, including using computer graphics and design programs; created models of clothes, illustrated various musical and literary works; presented a photo collage, a digital art photo, a video clip and a video film; prepared creative works for further participation in exhibitions and contests of artistic creativity, including virtual ones, etc.
On the subject “Music”, the final results of practical activities were presented in the dance compositions form (the embodiment of various musical images), participation in music festivals, competitions and theatrical performances, performance of music different styles and genres (vocal, including solo, ensemble and choral , instrumental, individual and collective) at concerts, any other class activities, at schools, etc. (Shimshon-Santo, 2018). Despite the complexity, there were also results in such types of educational activities as electronic musical creativity, improvisation (vocal, instrumental, dance) and composing music, including using the contemporary information and communication technologies for arranging, as well as recording and reproducing musical compositions (6%).
A significant part of the students chose a final work purely theoretical orientation in the visual arts (42%) and music (46%), and focused on preparing messages and speeches about the work of Russian and foreign modern art figures (including modern singers and others), instrumental ensembles and popular performers, artists and composers, on styles and genres in the art of the 19th – 21st centuries, etc. Students were created presentations, including the results of individual, group and collective design and research activities, etc.
Quite a small part of students presented the final work in a combination of theoretical and practical activities (26% of students in the visual arts, 18% in music). This, for example, is the presentation of one’s own works virtual photo exhibition, a gallery of musical and decorative arts with a demonstration of the performance and independently performed creative works recording; final class concert program and video, school disco program with class performers, etc. The overall results obtained in the course of studying the students’ preferences when choosing options for the final work are presented in Table
According to the study results analysis and information systematization obtained as a result of the same students’ surveys after certain time (from one year to three years), the following facts were revealed.
In the field of artistic and creative activity as a whole, maturing students retain a heightened interest in everything related to the contemporary information and communication technologies. In art, this is, above all, a passion for photography using mobile phones, computers, etc., editing photos based on programs such as Adobe Photoshop and others, as well as creating video clips, etc., and then posting them on social networks and so on (86%). In music, students are attracted by the process of recording and reproducing, processing and elementary arranging popular songs and dances, including soundtracks from well-known foreign and Russian movies.
The overwhelming majority of children (88%) retain an interest in music, mainly in popular, rock music, Russian and foreign classical works in modern processing, electronic music, dance music, played at school discos, in clubs at youth parties, etc. 18% of students have the opportunity to periodically attend sections of dance art, the interest is mainly modern dance. Regarding excursions to museums of musical and artistic culture, exhibitions of visual and artistic creativity, as well as interest in visiting musical and drama theatres, thematic contests and festivals, 36% of students have a certain enthusiasm. Moreover, in most cases, the initiators of visits to museum were school teachers and / or parents.
In the area of the so-called maturing students theoretical activity results the following has been revealed. Not so many children devote their free time to reading fiction and music literature outside the school curriculum, as well as acquaintance with books (electronic including) about the work of outstanding composers and artists, etc., studying specialized magazines on musical and visual arts (3% in fine arts and 4% in music). These are, as a rule, those students who plan to receive further professional education in the field of culture and art.
Musical art and visual arts remain outside the modern students’ interests and preferences, respectively, in 12% and 14% of students. The reasons are different, starting with workload and training for entering secondary vocational and higher education institutions, and ending with an indifferent attitude to art as a part of one’s life.
At the same time, students do not exclude the possibility of any classes resumption (modern dance, computer design, etc.) in a more distant future.
With regard to the so-called integrated activity, combining theoretical and practical aspects in the development of music and visual art, we note the fact that this is what do children who are determined at the time of the study with the future professional activity in culture and art field choice (respectively music and 11% in fine arts, see Table
The summarized results of targeted pedagogical observations and conversations conducted with music and visual arts teachers are presented in paragraph 7.
According to art education impact effects on modern students study, the following conclusions were made:
At the end of the compulsory course in the subjects “Music” and “Fine Arts” at secondary school, art as such does not disappear from the life of modern students, but it also shifts the accents and priorities of maturing children in both artistic and creative activities and preferences regarding styles, genres, trends in the modern music "light" genres direction.
The students, who, due to various circumstances, aim at obtaining further professional education in the culture and art field, have a heightened interest in expanding and independently replenishing artistic knowledge and further forming special (musical, artistic) skills.
The greatest effect of art education is observed when modern students master and study art in all its integrity and diversity, while comprehending various theoretical knowledge and independent artistic and creative activity in the process of learning in inseparable unity.
It was revealed that the final positive results obtained by students for theoretical work performed in the objects of art compulsory study at secondary school process, in some cases (6%) do not encourage children to take up art in the future. The reasons for this, in the opinion of the authors, are different, including the so-called "syndrome honours", low interest in art in general.
Demonstration of the independent, artistic, creative, and project-research activities results in art classes is most preferable when students choose options for final work upon objects of art compulsory (formal) study completion.
In music and visual arts classes teacher’s attention to the diversity of artistic and creative practice based on the contemporary information and communication technologies supports the further children interest in art and ensures the art education impact effectiveness on modern students.
The least enthusiasm of students at the end of music and the visual arts compulsory course study is observed in the field of theoretical knowledge, specific information about styles and genres of art, trends and directions, as well as the artistic creativity, Russian and foreign culture and art heritage specifics, etc.
At the same time, there was a change in the modern students dominant interests when communicating with art - from the variety of styles and genres presented in the compulsory study programs to enthusiasm of art for any one kind and mainly based on information and communication technologies upon the course completion.
Among the innovative pedagogical technologies, methods and techniques used by art teachers, it is necessary to emphasize high efficiency, such as artistic synthesis in art classes at school (Kabkova, 2005), actualization of the children artistic and creative potential (from the image and thought to independent actions) on the basis of the well-known position “Every child is talented!”.
Of particular importance for the support of students’ promising interest in art is the teacher professional skill, consisting in the virtually every class students’ artistic and creative activity various types use. For example, in music classes, this is listening, singing, instrumental playing, improvisation, the musical-plastic movement, dramatization of musical works.
The reproductive method aimed at literally “copying”, performing teacher-defined actions and reproducing artistic knowledge, skills and abilities “in pattern” is least conducive to the students' interest in art development and artistic and creative activities various types.
The interrelation between classes’ forms variety, technologies, methods, techniques used by teacher in teaching art, and the variability of the students’ final theoretical, artistic, practical and creative works is revealed. This, in the opinion of the authors, determines children's interest in art as a whole, which predetermines the general art education impact effectiveness in the short term.
Positive emotional background of learning, flexible combination of communication different styles between teacher and students depending on specific goals and objectives, productive creative interaction and cooperation in conjunction with the emotional-semantic drama of art classes cause a deep response, leave a special impression on children, remain in their memory, feelings, and is the “fulcrum” for the art education impact effect in general.
Work is performed within the government assignment of Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation to 2019 year.
The authors wish to thank:
Elena Yur'evna Tratsevskaya, PhD (the Pedagogical Sciences), ex-Director of, and currently Head of the Club Unit (a music/theater studio), the College of Music and Theater Arts named after G.P. Vishnevskaya, for supporting the study idea and the possibility of its implementation.
Valentina Andreevna Vasil'eva, PhD (the Biological Sciences), ex-Head of the Department of Experimentation and currently Head of the Instructional Department at the College of Music and Theater Arts named after G.P. Vishnevskaya, for the promotion of authors’ initiatives and work with teachers.
Ingа Vahtangovnа Zhgenti, PhD (the Pedagogical Sciences), Head of the Pre-vocational Education Department of the Federal State Budgetary Educational Institution of Higher Education "Academy of Watercolors and Fine Arts by Sergey Andriyaka" for creative participation and provided results relating to the research problem.
Bondarenko Tatyana Ivanovna, PhD (the Pedagogical Sciences) , the teacher of music of the state budgetary educational center of the city of Moscow «Grammar school № 1619 named after М.I. Tsvetaeva» for the materials provided experimental activities.
Irina Borisovna Shul’gina, PhD (the Pedagogical Sciences), Honoured Teacher of the Russian Federation, methodologist State Budget educational institution of Moscow «School № 2010» for professional support and advisory activities.
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30 September 2019
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Vladimirova, S. V., Aryabkina, I. V., Beregovaya, E. B., Stukalova, O. V., & Alekseeva*, L. L. (2019). Art Education And Its Impact Effects On Modern Students. In & S. K. Lo (Ed.), Education Environment for the Information Age, vol 69. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 57-66). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2019.09.02.8