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Combining art activities and nature in pre-school education

Zeynep Temiz, Güliz Karaarslan Semiz
Erken Çocukluk Çalışmaları Dergisi , Volume 2, pp 556-570; doi:10.24130/eccd-jecs.1967201823103

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to integrate nature and natural materials in art activities in pre-school education setting. Eight pre-service early childhood teachers taking practicum course participated in this study. Pre-service teachers were encouraged to use nature and natural materials in art activities through ten weeks period. Qualitative data consisted of art activities conducted with natural materials in the practicum course and interviews conducted with pre-service teachers before and after they applied their activities. Findings of the study revealed that pre-service teachers used unusual and engaging material compared to conventional stationary materials generally used in art activities. Pre-service teachers’ art materials included stones, leaves, soil, sand, bones, fruits, animal products and parts but not limited to those materials. Pre-service teachers used these materials in their art activities in two different ways. First, they used these materials as substitutes of stationery materials. For instance, they filled the bird picture with stones and leaves instead of filling with colourful papers, beads and silver. Second use of natural materials fit better to aim of this study since pre-service teachers lead children to create authentic art products with natural materials that they provide to them. Moreover, throughout the course pre-service teachers’ self-confidence to apply nature based art activities developed.
Keywords: natural materials / Art Activities / pre service teachersâ

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