Art Education and the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
We need kindness in this world. Now, more than ever. With the larger implications of COVID-19, the world is especially scary, confusing, and overwhelming for so many of us. Naturally, fear leads to grief. It can be paralyzing. With this heavy layer of anxiety, we, as art teachers especially, need ways to break through the uncertainty and spread creativity with kindness. It is also essential for us to look for some good news in the midst of all the bad.
Remember, there is no wrong way to spread kindness.
Whether it’s a small action just for yourself or something on a larger scale to spread kindness to many, try any of these ideas to spread positivity, especially during a crisis.
1. Create a Positivity Poster
Positive words of affirmation hold so much power. These uplifting, kind words remind us to focus on the good in a situation, as much as possible. These words can encourage others to stay strong. They can lift us up when we are feeling down and remind us we are all humans living on the same earth.
In The Art of Education University’s Weekly Coronavirus Webinars, discussions include ideas for spreading kindness. Watch how to create your own poster here. Also, download this positivity poster resource to help inspire some ideas.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to creating your own positivity poster. If you live in an area where lots of people are walking, it can be fun to display your completed poster in a window for people walking by.
If you’re looking to share or watch a video tutorial on how to make a positivity poster with your students, check here.
2. Decorate Your Windows
Since so many of us are primarily confined to our individual living spaces, it can feel hard to radiate positivity to the people around us from inside. But, no matter what kind of space you live in, try decorating your windows with symbols of positivity such as rainbows, hearts, and peace signs.
Originating in Italy, many people have been decorating their homes and windows with rainbow paintings and signs. Rainbows can symbolize beauty after a storm, promoting hope and positivity during times of crisis. Check out these beautiful rainbows from windows and balconies all over England.
To decorate your windows, you can cut paper hearts and rainbows and attach them directly to your windows. You can also paint right on your windows if you use washable or tempera paint. When it’s time to clean off your windows, simply wipe away with a damp sponge or paper towel.
3. Chalk your Walk
Try creating messages of positivity on sidewalks near you. Encouraging others with positive words and messages is just another reminder that we are not alone.
For ideas about sidewalk decorations, consider a few of the following:
- Write messages and symbols of love and positivity
- Create a game of hopscotch
- Draw an interactive obstacle course
- Write an alphabet or number line
Join us for our free webinar. Register here.
4. Make and Share Art
Sometimes the best way to make yourself feel better is to make someone else feel better! First, take some time for yourself and make your own art. Then, create a little package of beautiful creations to send to someone you love.
Kindness will never get old.
Whenever you return to the art room, allow kindness to continue and intentionally teach kindness to students. Students will not only learn creativity but also how their actions influence the way others may feel. Allow kindness to be the most important side effect of the absence you have had from the classroom. Be well.
How have you been spreading kindness?
What can we do to teach our students about the importance of being kind?
What other character traits have helped you during this time?
Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.