Enhancing pedagogy for teaching visual arts in the South African Foundation Phase classroom: A collaborative endeavor

Keywords: Visual arts education, pedagogy, Elementary school teachers, pedagogical content knowledge, PALAR, reflexive visual journaling, photovoice


This article reports on the pedagogy of a cohort of South African Foundation Phase teachers in the praxis of visual arts. Participatory action and action research (PALAR) was used as paradigm and methodology and data was generated collaboratively, through arts-based strategies such as photovoice, visual journaling, and reflexive group conversations. The data were analyzed using an inductive analysis approach. The data indicated a set of extrinsic and intrinsic barriers experienced by the participants in the praxis and pedagogy of visual arts in a South African context. Recommendations are provided for Foundation Phase teachers, school management teams, and governmental Departments of Education. This study contributes to the field of arts education by highlighting the plight of generalist teachers having to teach visual arts without sufficient training or support. Opportunities are created for arts educators to contribute to the experiences of these teachers.


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