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Running head: Childrens Qualitative Research Paper 1

Childrens Qualitative Research Paper


Jessica Burris
University of Missouri















Childrens Qualitative Research Paper 2

Introduction
The purpose of this investigation is to review the artwork of a young artist in primary
school, to discuss the artwork in separate parts and holistically, and to discuss the relation these
findings have to general elementary education teachers. This research paper will address the
stages the childs artwork demonstrates according to various sources, and will present
suggestions for the students growth in his or her artistic development. The initial conclusion
drawn from viewing the artwork stems from the artists use of space in the drawing. As the
student develops, he or she should be given various opportunities to explore how space can be
manipulated when creating art.
Method

This study was conducted in the University of Missouris Learning, Teaching, and
Curriculum 4240: Art for Children course for undergraduate elementary education students.
Students were to select one piece from a variety of options of drawings at random. The study
participant in this research paper is a primary aged child. The source of data came from various
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articles located in the Learning, Teaching, and Curriculum 4240 MizzouPublishing packet put
together by Professor Smith for the students in the Learning, Teaching, and Curriculum 4240:
Art for Children course.
Findings
Located above is the data source, the childs drawing, for my study. From viewing this
drawing, it can be concluded that the drawing is demonstrating understandings located within the
Schematic Stage, where the artist would be at a range of seven to nine years of age (Lowenfeld
and Brittain, 1970). A significant characteristic of the drawing that shows this is the childs use
of a baseline to which the characters drawn are placed on the piece. There is a recognizable
understanding of depth shown from the people drawn in relation to the other objects within the
piece. The artwork also shows the artists active knowledge of the environment (Lowenfeld
and Brittain 1970, p. 49). This is seen on the illustrated goals, field, participants, and music
playing to show a sporting event environment.
According to the principles developed by Wilson and Wilson, 1982 in their article
Learning to draw: nurturing the natural, this young artist displayed elements of the
perpendicular principle (p.52), the territorial imperative principle (p.61), and the draw-
everything principle (p.64) due to the artworks incorporation of space, baselines, and objects
used within the piece. Within the perpendicular principle, the drawing shows a deliberated order
brought upon by the artist (Wilson and Wilson 1982). The characters that are meant to represent
people are placed among the field, in between the goals set up by the artist. The goal towards the
top of the drawing appears to be upside down, but to this young artist the goals are in relation to
how the baseline he or she set up faces within the drawing (Wilson and Wilson 1982). The child
shows aspects of the territorial imperative principle from the use of space within the artwork.
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Among the objects incorporated, none of them touch directly, including the character who is
bouncing a ball. According to Wilson and Wilson, 1982, within the draw-everything principle,
The childoften draws what can be seen from several or all points of view and may include in
drawings things that cannot be seen (p.64). This can be seen in various areas of the piece. The
placement of the ball and the music box demonstrate the idea that objects can be seen through all
viewpoints. The incorporation of musical notes taking space around the music box is also an
indication that the child is representing elements of the draw-everything principle (Wilson and
Wilson, 1982).
Conclusion
According to the Maryland Board of Education of Baltimore County (1974), in Art
Experience, Development of Visual Perceptions in relation to the findings of this study, the child
can continue to develop his or her artistic development through practice of multiple relationships
involving objects, space, and movement (p. 3-4). The child should be encouraged to explore
various experiences in detail and study the natural movement of objects that surround him or her.
As an undergraduate elementary education major, I would allow this student the opportunity to
express himself visually by incorporating various artistic elements into my lessons throughout
my common core curricula. For this student, I would encourage student growth by creating
instances of surprise that will in turn create a significant amount of satisfaction for the student
(Eisner, 2009).
I acknowledge that this research paper is limited in its amount of research. For further
research on the topic of childrens drawings in relation to artistic development, please visit the
University of Missouris Ellis Library for reliable sources and data. From my study, I was able to
conclude that the knowledge and understanding of a childs artistic development will directly
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relate to a fulfilled experience within the classroom. According to Erikson and Young (1996)
What every educator should (but maybe doesnt) know from School Arts, Childrens abilities to
create drawings and to understand art develop in a parallel fashion to changes in their cognitive,
emotional, social, and physical growth(p. 41). Based on the research in this study, having an
understanding about childrens art development will enhance their academic and personal
growth, and that future educators have a significant and direct role in providing these fulfilled
experiences.
















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References
Eisner, E. (2009). What education can learn from the arts. Art Education, 62(2), 22-25.
Erickson, M., & Young, B. (1996). What every educator should (but maybe doesnt) know.
School Arts, 96(2), 40-42.
Lowenfeld, V., & Brittain, W. L. (1970). Creative and mental growth. New York: Macmillan.
Maryland Board of Education of Baltimore County. (1974). Beginning stages of visual
expression of young children. In Art Experience, Development of Visual Perception, 1-4.
Wilson, M., & Wilson, B. (1982). Teaching children to draw: Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-
Hall. (note chapter title is called Learning to Draw: Nurturing the Natural)