top of page
“As manual training seemed increasingly outmoded to educators who supported vocational training, educators who still supported general education and manual training began to join forces with arts and crafts enthusiasts." (Stankiewicz, 2004)


The first professional organization of art educators was founded in 1874, which solidified a place for the arts in modern education. In 1883 the National Education Association (founded in 1857) established the Department of Art Education. In 1892, the NEA appointed ten prominent educators, including committee leader Charles W. Eliot, president of Harvard, who published the Report of the Committee of Ten for secondary education reform in 1895, creating crucial changes to the education system in the U.S. Both gave educators guidelines and ideas to use in the classroom while discussing and aiding in solving major issues in education. It was this national support and recognition of art education that led to a boom in related developments over the next few decades: 


John Dewey begins an experimental school with the purpose of allowing children to grow mentally, physically, and socially while becoming creative, critical thinkers. Dewey believed that children should grow as individuals and experiment with natural talent.


Milton Bradley published the book Colour in the Kindergarten Classroom. The book introduced the standard six colors and their complements. The book also introduces color construction paper to aid in the teaching of color.


The Picture-Study Movement brought “art appreciation” into public schools. Many young children had opportunities to view and discuss artworks for the first time, typically with moral or religious messages.


The Arts and Crafts Movement begins, blending art and manual training.


Margaret E. Mathias wrote a book titled, The Beginnings of Art in the Public Schools. The book discussed issues important to art education in kindergarten through second grade. This book is the first well-known book on art education.


The Child-Study Movement began using art to study children's emotional and cognitive growth.

bottom of page