Arts and Crafts – Specialisation for Pre-School Teachers 30FOFØ

Course Objectives

The programme will provide students with the self-confidence and skills necessary to apply the subject in on-the-job situations. They will also develop skills required to stimulate the creative activities of children, and to work systematically with arts and crafts and art and cultural mediation in schools and kindergartens. Students will learn to document and reflect upon their own creative work and their professional arts and crafts activities with children.

Course Description

Target area 1: Subject knowledge

Competence aims: Students will further develop their aesthetic appreciation and ability to express themselves through practical creative work with images, handicrafts, architecture and design. Students should be able to carry out their own arts and crafts development activities.


Students will gain experience and understanding of working with images through their own creative efforts using various techniques. They will learn how inspiration from nature, culture and art can enrich their own creative efforts when creating images. Through this insight, students will also gain an understanding of why children need impressions and impulses in connection with their two-dimensional work. Students’ work with their own images may be related to teaching children as a target group.

Students will become familiar with the principal concepts of the discipline and learn to use aesthetic techniques such as lines, surfaces, colours, balance, rhythm and contrast in their own work with images. Students will further develop their knowledge of creating images by specialising in areas such as drawing, colouring, painting and animation/ICT. Emphasis will be placed on materials and techniques that are suitable for use in pre-school and the lower primary school grades. Photography and the use of photographs to document pedagogical activities also constitute an important part of the programme. This includes creating exhibits aimed at children.

Sculpture and Three-Dimensional Objects

Students will gain experience with various ways of forming and constructing sculpture and utility objects. They will gain experience of how inspiration from nature, culture, art and everyday objects enriches their work. In this course unit students will be involved with work in relation to communication and children’s play, for instance, toys, puppet theatre or other objects which may function in this context. In this way, students will gain an understanding of children’s needs for impulses regarding three-dimensional work. The work with sculpture and utility objects includes also documentation and exhibition of products and the arrangement of exhibitions where the target group is children.

The students will become acquainted with principal concepts related to aesthetic tools in sculpture and three-dimensional objects such as form, space, volume, texture, composition and function. The students will become acquainted with various types of constructive and plastic materials used in various contexts.

Art, Media and Design Culture

Students will encounter paintings, handicrafts, media images, photographs and mass-produced utility objects viewed in a historical and cultural perspective. They will become acquainted with various image genres, objects and media produced for children and develop a critical and reflective attitude towards this aspect of children’s culture.

Students will gain knowledge of aesthetic theory, theory of art and perception theory. Through knowledge of concepts such as aesthetic perception, aesthetic experience and aesthetic awareness, students will be able to reflect on the importance of stimulating children’s aesthetic development. Students will become acquainted with various styles and expressions within the fields of sculpture and architecture. The student will gain experience of how to utilise art and cultural expressions in work with children in kindergartens and schools. Students will gain knowledge and experience of how libraries, exhibitions, museums, theatre performances and other cultural events and institutions may be used in a pedagogical context.

Target Area 2. Pedagogical work with children

Competence aims: Students will gain experience of subject didactics which includes observation, planning, execution, documentation and evaluation of arts and crafts activities. The study programme also includes showing how it is possible to visualise pedagogical processes by using exhibitions as a form of documentation. The student will also be able to reflect upon the development of the kindergarten’s physical environment. The student will learn skills enabling him/her to carry out independent and versatile pedagogical arts and crafts activities with children, and be able to relate theory to the practical work.

Students will become acquainted with the various views regarding children’s two and three-dimensional modes of expression and development viewed in relation to historical development and pedagogical movements. They will acquire theoretical knowledge of creativity and creative processes and develop understanding for the subject related to children with different backgrounds and needs. The student’s capacity to develop the ability and skills needed to document a child’s experiences and learning during creative processes is another important area of competence.

Students should be aware of the various aspects of the adult role related to the child’s development regarding arts and crafts. This concerns the role of culture disseminator, discussion partner, organiser and inspirator in interaction with children engaged in activities.

Target area 3: Interaction and reflection

Competence aims: The student will be able to assess the possibilities and limitations regarding arts and crafts activities in the kindergarten’s inside and outside areas. The student will be able to reflect upon the development of the kindergarten’s physical environment and assess which options are possible with regard to various environments. Students will receive training in how to see the connection between an adult’s actions and practical planning, children’s experiences and activities and the development in their identity and character. Students should be able to receive and provide supervision related to creative work with children.

Students will learn to reflect on the necessary conditions for creative processes for children of different ages and with different cultural backgrounds. They should be able to reflect on the connection between the images and styles prevalent in society and that of children’s perception and modes of expression.

Development projects in kindergartens

Professional development projects are an important quality assurance element in kindergartens. As a starting point for a smaller professional development project, individually or in groups, the student will become acquainted with the methods and forms of documentation for investigating questions related to arts and crafts from a pedagogical standpoint. The student will gain experience through the systematic planning and execution of a professional development project related to practical experience in working with children that will include the collection, registration and analysis of children’s expressions. The process will provide the student with knowledge of how elements such as problem approach, content, aim, premises, working methods and evaluation are related and form a foundation for the documentation of pedagogical work. The project must be completed within a time frame of 1-2 weeks.

Learning Methods

The academic year will be structured into workshops at the Notodden campus, Telemark University College. This will consist of four 2-day workshops per semester. Between the workshop periods students will also be offered the possibility of regional workshops in the region in which they live. Between the workshop periods the study programme is Internet-based and operated by the students.

Teaching and Learning Methods:

The study programme will be dominated by learning methods in which the students are actively involved. Creative work will often be preceded by a theoretical introduction and demonstration of work with various kinds of material and techniques. Subject-theoretical themes will be presented in the lectures and in supervision related to students’ work. The student’s own practical and theoretical work will be done individually or in groups. Throughout the course of the study programme each student is responsible for studying the theoretical subject material. The student needs time to become acquainted with the material, tools and techniques. It is expected that he/she works independently and seeks the teacher’s supervision. The student is also responsible for the school’s material, equipment and workshops.

Throughout the whole of the study programme students and teachers will participate in an informal evaluation of the practical creative work, assignments, programme plan and teaching and learning methods. The subject’s academic affairs committee will formalise this assessment.

Programme requirements

  • All the assignments should be carried out under supervision and be approved before final assessment can be given.
  • The professional development project should be carried out in a kindergarten, primary school (grades 1-4) or a children’s group in a culture school or equivalent. It must receive a passing mark.
  • The documentation exhibition with report from the professional development project.

Practical creative work may be done in groups, but the written part which comprises a log and didactic/theoretical response should be done individually. Student products, which have not been presented to the teacher during supervision, may be rejected as a component of the final assessment.

Assessment Methods

Criteria for the evaluation of practical creative work with log are:

Work effort, technical execution, use of materials, creative idea, aesthetic design and function for student product and log.

Criteria for didactic/theoretical description are:

Theoretical basis, didactic understanding and reflection.

Final assessment

A formal assessment with graded mark is awarded for three selected practical pieces of work with didactic/theoretical written parts. The subject teacher chooses two periods, and the student one. The professional development project is also assessed and awarded a graded mark that is included in the final assessment. In the assessment of each period the practical creative work is weighted 2 and the didactic/theoretical description 1. The student will receive information concerning which assignments will be drawn two weeks before the date of submission.



Partial grade from selected work 1


Partial grade from selected work 2


Partial grade from selected work 3


Partial grade from the documentation exhibition with report, professional development project


A single grade is entered on the diploma, graded from A to F, where A is the highest, and E the lowest passing grade. In order to receive a final passing grade, each course unit must also receive a passing grade.

For further information please refer to Telemark University College’s examination regulations.

Minor adjustments may occur during the academic year, subject to the decision of the Dean

Publisert av / forfatter Ian Harkness <>, last modified Ian Hector Harkness - 01/04/2011