Other models of education

Art curriculums around the world



Basic Education in the Arts

Basic education in the arts is goal-oriented, progressing from one level to other. It teaches children skills in self-expression and capabilities needed for vocational, polytechnic and university education in their chosen art form.

  • Legislation stipulates that basic education in the arts must be provided either by educational institutions or arranged in other ways

Curricula for Basic Education in the Arts

The objectives and core contents are determined in national core curricula devised by the National Board of Education for nine different art forms, which are music, literary arts, dance, performing arts (circus and theatre) and visual arts (architecture, audiovisual art, visual arts, and craft).

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Visual arts include the fine arts, cinema, photography, design and digital art. Teaching visual arts requires regular and diversified practice in modelling, drawing and producing fixed or mobile images. Traditional techniques (painting, drawing) or more contemporary ones (digital photography, cinema, video, computer graphics) are used as well as simple amalgamation procedures: overlays and drawing, collage and montage). These activities are created two dimensionally as well as three-dimensionally, using tools, manual techniques, and different media and support materials. Students are led to express what they observe, to imagine and create their own projects and their own artwork using appropriate vocabulary.



Learning design within the Arts involves analysing needs, understanding and selecting and testing materials and processes, and providing solutions that satisfy social, cultural, communicative and environmental needs and understandings. Teaching design through the Arts involves divergent and convergent thinking, visualisation, imagination and immersion in and beyond material and technological solutions.


New Zealand

The arts curriculum is divided into four disciplines at each level: dance, drama, music-sound arts, and visual arts. Each art has its own standards at each level. The standards are further divided into four general conceptual categories at each level:

  • Understanding the arts in context: arts from a variety of cultures, historical and social contexts
  • Developing practical knowledge: materials, processes, instruments, elements and principles
  • Developing ideas: generated through cycles of action and reflection
  • Communicating and interpreting: sharing, describing, performing, responding

Within the curriculum document there is discussion of “teacher actions that promote learning”. The ideals of this pedagogy are defined in general terms:

  • Create a supportive learning environment
  • Encourage reflective thought and action
  • Enhance the relevance of new learning
  • Facilitate shared learning
  • Make connections to prior learning and experience
  • Provide sufficient opportunities to learn
  • Inquire into the teaching–learning relationship

The use of Information Communication Technology (ICT) is supported in New Zealand’s standards.