International Journal of Art & Design Education

Originality and Originals, Copies and Reproductions: Reflections on a Primary School Project

Volume 3.2   1984



This article argues first, that studying art objects and images is an effective vehicle of learning for young children; secondly, that such study can be more sharply focussed through that activity deprecatingly called copying; and thirdly, that working in this way, far from inhibiting children's inventiveness, may assist it. The article argues that art education's development has been more influenced by psychological than aesthetic theory and, that, as a teacher, the author often felt uncomfortable with the notion that pupils should only make art rather than study it. Conclusions were drawn from action research using reproductions of paintings and the 'real thing' with two groups of primary children and the article gives a clear account of the approach and conclusions derived from the research.