Virtual Symposium 2021 – About

There’s an elephant* in the early childhood visual arts room: A virtual symposium to confront the big issues.


21st – 27th Feb 2021

In 2021, our conference is going virtual! Explore below.

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* metaphorical idiom for an important or enormous topic, problem that is obvious but no one mentions or wants to discuss because it makes some uncomfortable or is personally, socially, or politically embarrassing, controversial, inflammatory, or dangerous.



The Art In Early Childhood Virtual Symposium is on right now.
21st – 27th February 2021!

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    About this symposium

    We invite all those who are passionate about the visual arts in early childhood to learn about and discuss a range of theories, practices problems and inspirations to impact pedagogy and practice. We hope everyone participating in the art in early childhood virtual symposium will have a voice and contribute to progressing quality visual arts pedagogy around the world. Our membership is global and time differences a challenge for synchronous sessions. The 2021 art in early childhood virtual symposium therefore aims to bring us together to inspire dialogue, networking and practice and to support engagement and participation. All who register will be given a code and password to gain access to the symposium.
    The symposium will consist of:

      • A prerecorded opening ceremony and welcome information on Sunday February 21st , 2021.
      • During the first week, all presentations and activities will be available from day 1 and presenters and organizers accessible through forums or chat rooms. Each presenter will have a ‘tile’ on the symposium platform (Moodle). Each presentation will offer a collection of digital artifacts relevant to their topic which you can access and engage with at any time. (For example, a power point, a paper, photos, videos, interview, gallery of work, Q&A, forum etc).
      • The majority of the presentations are prerecorded so you will have 24/7 access.
      • There will be a few synchronous (live) events during the first week. These will be recorded to enable later access.
      • On the 27th February 2021 we plan to schedule two or three synchronous Q and A sessions and discussion forums to review and wrap up the first week.
      • Artist workshops will encourage ‘hands on’ artmaking, offering delegates guidance and support to learn and play with a range of visual arts techniques.
      • We will have virtual ‘seats in the sun’ and a gallery to display our workshop art.
      • After 27th the content of the symposium will be available to you asynchronously 24/7, at your convenience, until 21st March 2021.

    We have identified six key issue areas that we feel worth discussing in more depth and have invited academics, artists and practitioners to kick start learning, reflection and discussion about the issues. Each session will pose questions for us to think about, talk about and have ways for us to respond.

       Theory: Present more contemporary, compatible frameworks.

       Pedagogy: Practitioners will demonstrate and discuss effective pedagogy for the arts.

       Curriculum: Discuss how we can put the arts at the centre of the curriculum.

       Culture: Celebrate cultural diversity.

       Research: Is it addressing the gaps?

       Artists: Engage with artists and art museums.


    Special thanks

    This Symposium would not be possible without the tireless and enthusiastic support of Steve Grono. Steve has been responsible for all the web and Moodle building and creation of custom built solutions when ‘regular’ just didn’t do it for us. Thank you Steve!