Reading Response Blog #2
“Blatt-Gross, C. (2010). Casting the conceptual Net: Cognitive possibilities for embracing the social and emotional richness of art education”
This reading was extremely interesting because it brought a scientific aspect and explanation to why art is the way that it is. “Cognitive scientists Lindsay M. Oberman and Jaime A. Pineda worked with main scientist Ramachandran to research how the mirror neuron system is ‘specialized not only for processing animate stimuli, but specifically stimuli with social relevance'” (Blatt-Gross, 355). These scientists worked to discover more about how the brain processes and receives information and by doing so they have found that mirror neurons internalize the emotions and actions of another, or the emotions brought on by a specific event, and change how a person will later react or behave.
Mirror neurons have helped to prove the idea that humans are social learners. Emotions become essential to ones’s ability to transfer knowledge to real-world situations and figure out the complexities of the social world. A quote from the reading that I found to be pertinent is, “Specifically, it may be via an emotional route that the social influences of culture come to shape learning, thought, and behavior” (Blatt-Gross, 359).
Looking closely at art as social cognition, one must know that maintaining social relationships is through language because of it’s ability to share personal information about one’s self and others. Language does not always have to be in the form of speaking, however, and art can be just as much a means of expression and sharing of personal information that language can be. Suzanne Langer defined art as “the practice of creating perceptible forms expressive of human feeling” (Blatt-Gross, 361). She explains that art is a deeper form of expression than language because it creates a mysterious aspect in which certain parts of the reality remain inaccessible or left for the imagination. Because of this, art can convey an “inner experience” or an apathetic appreciate that language cannot always create.
Art is an essential part of the “community of mind” that one can define as culture. Art has a potential to communicate and bond the experience of fellow beings and it should be used in educational settings to satisfy cognitive, social, and emotional needs. The research from neuroscience and psychology help to show evidence that art is a necessity in the education of all humans.
- What are some ways to promote discussion about art?
- How does the process of drawing compare to looking at art works?
- How young is too young to promote the discussion about art?
- How do you incorporate discussion to include those that do not like talking about the works they have created?
- How do you effectively touch on a student’s emotions without bringing bad memories or experiences to the surface?