Educating Through the Arts. The Challenge of the Tandem Between the Escola Miquel Bleach and the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya

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Heading of the blog creixemamblart.blogspot.com/where you can follow the project basis. The image of the tandem of Ramon Casas and Pere Romeu moving between the school and the museum has become an icon of the project.

Sometimes challenges and opportunities are two sides of the same coin. While as educators we are witnesses of the will to erase the arts from the official educational curriculum by some leading sectors, there appear some projects that go against the tide like this one of Tàndem Schools.The aim is to promote successful education by means of the partnership over three years between an educational centre and an institution of reference. This includes the curricular specialization of the centres in a certain subject (music, dance, plastic arts, science, etc.).

The singular characteristic our tandem: to make a firm commitment towards the potential value of the arts as an educational agent, of growth of the individuals and of social transformation. Promoted by the Fundació Catalunya La Pedrera, the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, the Department of Education and the Education Consortium of the city, we are working together on a project that exemplifies a model of shared social responsibility.

Teacher training in the museum’s rooms.

Secondary students presenting he exhibition The collections from the heart.

Contributing to transforming the educational reality of the public school Miquel Bleach from the neighbourhood of Sants-Hostafrancs through the arts, is the challenge that the team leading this project took on from the Department of Education of the museum just about one year ago.

Where to start? ‘There are no manuals or magic formulas’ –they told us, ‘each Tandem is different…’ This didn’t calm us down much, but an opportunity like this one doesn’t pop up every day! Being able to experiment and influence in an educational context of proximity over a period of three years, having one foot in the classrooms and another in the museum with all the richness that this means, is the dream of any artistic educator!

This enthusiasm, however, doesn’t mean that we forget the reach and complexity of a project of these characteristics that requires a strong professional and relational leadership. From the museum, we share this role with the management team of the school and with the Tàndem Commission made up of teachers from different educational cycles.

This means working together towards a change that includes, on the one hand, discovering and using the possibilities of art so as to deal with any aspect of the curriculum, but also to be capable of implementing methodologies in the classrooms oriented towards research and project work. This change signifies making an important investment in the training of teachers in which professionals of the museum actively participate.

Intermediate students visiting one of the spaces for the large-sized reserves.

Intermediate students visiting the workshop for the restoration of the painting.

On the other hand, 99% of the families who come from other cultures have the opportunity of participating by means of the project and entering into a world that under other circumstances would surely remain unexplored.

We work together so as to achieve the fact that the school is a space of life, and one which is open and capable of taking advantage of all the resources that the cultural reality offers.

Based on the interest of the students a transversal topic is chosen that sets in motion singular research projects in the classrooms. The aim is to connect the daily lives of the students with the current reality and artistic heritage in the widest sense. Within each research the works of art appear as a means of knowledge and reflection about the topic we are studying. The projects we have developed so far within the framework of this collaboration: The collections from the heart, Come to the museum! and Bestiaries have led the children to discover the heritage which is based on their most beloved objects and to get to know the museum and how it works.

This course we continue with a new project: Cooking. If you want to taste what is cooked everyday in the project you can follow it here and in the blog let’s grow with art.

Related links

Projects with the schools

-Presentation video of the project

-Videos of the work of the students for the staging of the show, Come to the Museum!

Children’s education

Initial Cycle

Intermediate Cycle

Higher Cycle

 

Esther Fuertes

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