Metalworking programme for Senior Secondary School

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When it became necessary to prepare a Suggested Syllabus for the teaching of Visual Arts for Senior Secondary Schools, the teaching of metalworking was omitted. Metalworking, however, is one of the disciplines in Art which is studied to degree level t many universities in the world. In Ghana, the University of Science and Technology offers metalworking to a degree level. The exclusion of metalworking, according to my research, is that anytime metalworking is mentioned, minds are directed towards the use of gigantic machines fixed in factories and secondly, the making of Jewellery. It must be said that metalworking is not only limited to factory works and jewellery. A large number of functional as well as decorative objects can be fabricated with metals at small workshops. Even though a lot of literature has been written on metalworking, not much interest has been shown n them. It is my intention therefore to educate and make the public aware of the importance of teaching metalworking and the production of metal works without passing them through machines in factories. The purpose of this work is to draw more attention to the importance metalworking can contribute as far as Visual Art Education is concerned. Among other things, it is a Suggested Syllabus drawn to be used in the Senior Secondary Schools. This may be incorporate into the one already drawn Syllabus which provision was not made for metalworking. In the Suggested Visual Arts Syllabus, it is stated among others in the preamble that the Visual Art course embrases all art activities which end in a visual, These include Basketry, Ceramics, Leatherwork, Graphic Design, Picture - making, Sculpture and Textiles, Each of these will be studied as a separate option in the vocational programme, It is further explained that in each visual art course, several vocations can be identified. Similarly, several vocations, for’ example, making of coal pots, baking pans, bangles and graters, to mention only few, can be identified in metalworking. Thus, the inclusion of metalworking will increase the number of vocational opportunities on the syllabus. This will enable students to make choices. It is accepted that students will be able to set up a vocational venture only when they acquire the requisite skills. The properties of metals and the ability to shape, bend and join them will enable students acquire visual thinking skills. As students saw, drill, file and polish metals, they acquire manipulative skills. This is education of the hand. The satisfaction obtained by fabricating an object through the experience of art activity is in itself a joy to the heart. Metalworking will therefore help an individual to acquire the most important skills in education, that is, education of the head (cognitive), of the hand (psychomotor), and of the heart (affective). These are what the Visual Arts Syllabus is geared towards and since, all these training can be experienced in the studying of metalworking, it is enough justification to include metalworking in the teaching of Visual Arts at the Senior Secondary Schools. Chapter One of this write-up contains an introduction of the subject. This includes the objectives and the rationale of the course. In addition, it has the scheme of work that will be covered in each class for the 3-year course, Chapter Two deals with the Literature Review. Chapter Three has the outlines of selected topics to be treated. There are some concise notes on some of the topics. These can be used as guidelines to tutors, Chapter Four contains some of the surface treatments given to metals. Chapter Five is the summary, conclusions and recommendations.
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 award of the Degree of Master of Arts, 1992