Recipes from the Gingerbread House: Exploring the Witch Archetype to Address the Hidden Curriculum in Secondary Schools

Presentation


Russell, Ann. 2018. "Recipes from the Gingerbread House: Exploring the Witch Archetype to Address the Hidden Curriculum in Secondary Schools." The Fishbowl: Exploring Works in Progress Colloquium Program (2018). Toowoomba, Australia 14 Nov 2018
Paper/Presentation Title

Recipes from the Gingerbread House: Exploring the Witch Archetype to Address the Hidden Curriculum in Secondary Schools

Presentation TypePresentation
Authors
AuthorRussell, Ann
Year2018
Conference/EventThe Fishbowl: Exploring Works in Progress Colloquium Program (2018)
Event Details
The Fishbowl: Exploring Works in Progress Colloquium Program (2018)
Event Date
14 Nov 2018
Event Location
Toowoomba, Australia
Abstract

Some of the issues we deal with in society: stereotypes, vilification and ‘othering’ have their roots in the classroom, often generated and perpetuated by means of the ‘hidden curriculum’. The hidden curriculum involves the beliefs and values that are implied (rather than made explicit) to students by means of teaching and administrative practices (Rodriguez & Mai, 2012). It both reflects and perpetuates beliefs according to ideologies of the prevailing political power; often based on an erroneous or skewed understanding of historic and anthropological developments. My research project for the Doctor of Creative Arts utilises the fairy tale metaphor to draw on my extensive experience as a visual art educator and explores the hidden curriculum in schools by drawing on Hansel and Gretel to seek fresh insights into ways of educating students within the contemporary context. In this metaphor, the secondary art classroom or studio is likened to the Gingerbread House and the art teacher to the witch. Exploration of the witch as a teacher of creativity reveals her powerful ability to disrupt the messages of the hidden curriculum such as gender stereotyping and the deterrence of diversity. The purpose of this project is to use creative practice to disrupt the hidden curriculum and suggest alternatives which may contribute to a more sustainable and egalitarian culture.

As the project has progressed, my dual role of artist and teacher has reinforced my role as the ‘witch’ – making magic and casting spells during the making as well as through what the artwork might communicate. However, this aspect can confuse the scope of the witch, particularly as it pertains to the ‘Hansels and Gretels’ (students) and their processing of the hidden curriculum. Consequently, and since they belong to a completely different tale, circumventing rabbit holes has become an important part of the research project.

Reference
Rodriguez, R. G., & Mai, D. (2012). The Hidden Curriculum. Military Medicine, 177(9), 999-1001.

KeywordsVisual Art, Hidden Curriculum, Arts in Education, Learning, Hidden Curriculum, Rairy Tales, Hansel and Gretel
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020500301. Aesthetics
360104. Visual cultures
360602. Fine arts
440503. Feminist theory
390101. Creative arts, media and communication curriculum and pedagogy
390306. Secondary education
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Byline AffiliationsSchool of Arts and Communication
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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