Metal art as academic discipline for Senior Secondary Schools

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The Education Reform exercise embark upon by the government in 1987 brought with it the situation whereby metal art has not received any attention as a priority area of study in the visual art. It was relegated to the background during preparation of the suggested syllabus for the teaching of visual arts in Senior Secondary Schools prior to the inception of the Education Reform. Although jewellery has been introduced since 1996, its scope of working materials is limited to the use of clay, seeds, shells and pieces of sticks. Metal which should be the core working material was relegated to the background as an attempt by the government to guard against indiscriminate small scale gold mining operations, popularly called “galamsey” which is fast degrading the environment. Moreover, anytime metalwork is mentioned, minds are directed towards the use of heavy machines as if the vocation cannot be carried out in small workshops. The problem therefore is that metal art as a vocation is not taught in Senior Secondary Schools to transmit to students the skills and knowledge that will help them to contribute their quota to the socio-economic development of the nation. There is the need therefore, to evolve simplified techniques to promote the teaching and learning of the subject for the benefit of students without the use of heavy machines.
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Masters Degree in Art Education, 2000