At the beginning they will make many sketches of many different ideas and see which fits the purpose. They will be encouraged to ask questions such as, “How will this look from the back row? Will the bright colours overpower the costumes on stage? How will stage lighting change the way the colours look? Will movement on stage be disrupted by the size of the set?”

When they see the set on the stage during rehearsal they can fully understand how it affects the performance. When a performer trips over a set, they understand why precise measurements are so important.

Why does this matter?

As the world changes, what we currently know will become obsolete and so will any understandings that are built on that knowledge. Given new knowledge, we must search again for understanding. If we can help children learn how to build an understanding of the world, they will learn to always search for understanding. This is the only way they will be able to keep up.

With the rate of change we are now experiencing, this is more and more important. When young people graduate university, they are sometimes facing an industry that has changed dramatically since they began their studies.

Unfortunately, our current North American education system focuses on testing for knowledge rather than for understanding. If the facts I memorized for the test are not used in experience, they will soon be forgotten and understanding may never be attained.

Arts education is an excellent way of making sure our young people are always striving toward understanding the world and are able to keep pace with change.