What Are the National Visual Arts Standards?
These standards provide a framework for helping students learn
the characteristics of the visual arts by using a wide range of
subject matter, symbols, meaningful images, and visual expressions,
to reflect their ideas, feelings, and emotions; and to evaluate
the merits of their efforts. The standards address these objectives
in ways that promote acquisition of and fluency in new ways of thinking,
working, communicating, reasoning, and investigating. They emphasize
student acquisition of the most important and enduring ideas, concepts,
issues, dilemmas, and knowledge offered by the visual arts. They
develop new techniques, approaches, and habits for applying knowledge
and skills in the visual arts to the world beyond school.
The visual arts are extremely rich. They range from drawing, painting,
sculpture, and design, to architecture, film, video, and folk arts.
They involve a wide variety of tools, techniques, and processes.
The standards are structured to recognize that many elements from
this broad array can be used to accomplish specific educational
objectives. For example, drawing can be used as the basis for creative
activity, historical and cultural investigation, or analysis, as
can any other fields within the visual arts. The standards present
educational goals. It is the responsibility of practitioners to
choose appropriately from this rich array of content and processes
to fulfill these goals in specific circumstances and to develop
To meet the standards, students must learn vocabularies and concepts
associated with various types of work in the visual arts and must
exhibit their competence at various levels in visual, oral, and
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THE VISUAL STANDARDS FOR SPECIFIC GRADES
GRADES K - 4
GRADES 5 - 8
GRADES 9 -