National Institute of Advanced Studies

Arts Education

Grant Period: Over three years

Principal Investigator: Dr A R Vasavi

Since 2002, the District Quality Education Project (DQEP) of the Sociology and Social Anthropology Unit at the National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), Bangalore, have been engaged in making “elementary education accessible, enjoyable and significant to the lives of the children and the neighboring communities” of Chamarajnagar district.

The ‘Art in Education’ (AiE) programme will enhance the quality of classroom interactions by introducing art activities drawn from the student’s immediate surroundings. DQEP project will directly work with 28 schools and target a total of 885 schools through onward dissemination strategies.

In turn this district-level team of teachers will develop teaching modules for the arts that are particularly sensitive to the local context, and take responsibility for training teachers from other schools within and across the four educational blocks. It will also be responsible for creating a set of ‘Cluster Resource Persons’ (CRP), who would undertake back-stopping work for the art-in-education project. The CRPs would be employees of the District Institute for Education and Training (DIET), and this Institute would eventually be responsible for the sustenance of the art-in-education module.

The DQEP team will also produce a resource book that will enable the project participants to document their learning, and help the team monitor progress on the project.  Conceptualised as a working guide to teachers and other groups in the state and elsewhere, it will contain information relating to a broader understanding of art and its relation to pedagogy. It will also include a collection of activities and exercises revolving around issues from the social and cultural contexts of children, in a manner that allows teachers to actively improvise and add on to the original text.

This project will also host regular Kala Melas (art exhibitions) that will enable project participants to encounter the work of their colleagues from the other educational blocks, and facilitate the sharing of ideas with regard to arts pedagogy.