NAEA Position Statement on Early Childhood Art Education
[Adopted April 2010; Reviewed and Revised March 2013; Reviewed and Revised March 2016; Reviewed and Revised February 2021]
August 24, 2021
The visual arts are essential to early learning. Children are innately curious and seek to construct personal knowledge and understanding of the world. Children construct knowledge in meaningful social contexts with peers and adults. Children experience their environment in holistic ways that are best served by an interdisciplinary approach that includes both guided and spontaneous learning experiences. The visual arts support multiple ways of knowing and learning that are inherent in the unique nature of each child. The visual arts empower children to communicate, represent, and express their thoughts, feelings, and perceptions. The visual arts offer opportunities to develop creativity, imagination, and flexible thinking. The arts provide opportunities to enrich a young child’s understanding of diverse cultures. Early childhood art programs should be comprehensive in scope, including studio experiences, interactions with artists, real and virtual visits to museums and art galleries, and opportunities to respond to art through conversation, storytelling, play, dramatics, movement, music, and art making.
Resource Document: For additional information, please refer to the Position Paper on the Early Childhood Issues Group section of the NAEA website. http://www.arteducators.org/community/committees-issues-groups/ECAE_Position_Statement.pdf