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The Language of Art


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About the Author

Ann Pelo is a teacher educator, program consultant, and author whose primary work focuses on reflective pedagogical practice, social justice and ecological teaching and learning and the art of mentoring. Currently, Ann consults early childhood educators and administrators in North America, Australia, and New Zealand on inquiry-based teaching and learning, pedagogical leadership, and the necessary place of ecological identity in children's - and adults' - lives. She is the author of several books including the first edition of The Language of Art and co-author of That's Not Fair: A Teacher's Guide to Activism with Young Children.


I often wonder whether new editions are worth reading, especially when the first one is a winner. YES, YES! This is a must have second edition of an invaluable book.
While this new edition continues to offer teachers a wealth of examples for using art media as tools for inquiry, you'll find deeper understandings of how the language of art expands children's ability to pay attention to details, communicate, participate in conversations about ideas, question, collaborate, and take new perspectives. And, you'll have further help thinking through the teacher's role in this process, with suggestions to guide your experimentation, your documentation, and reflections on what you are learning.
And, while the language of art indeed cultivates 21st Century Skills, we must heed Pelo's important reminder that in this prescriptive and assessment driven era, "Art has many purposes, but serving as a conduit for assessment is not one...We can take up art as an expression of our participation in life."
--Margie Carter, co-founder, Harvest Resources Associates, co-author best selling Redleaf books, The Visionary Director, Designs for Living and Learning, The Art of Awareness, and Learning Together with Young Children

This splendid book contains a wide range of suggestions for introducing young children to paint, drawing materials, clay, loose parts, and wire as resources for aesthetic discovery. It is structured in a useful way for each material--going from getting launched, setting up, exploring and creating, cleaning up, and finally documentation and display. My favorite aspect was the discussion of the teacher's role as partner and guide, with suggested words the teacher might easily use. These modeled an open, sparkling, respectful, complex, and multifaceted way of interacting with children.
--Carolyn Pope Edwards, EdD, Cather Professor Emeritus, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

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