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Lourdes S. Guerrero
  • Female
  • Chicago, IL
  • United States

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Stress and Creativity

Started Sep 8, 2011 0 Replies

So how does stress affect your creativity? Do you have techniques to "break past" the stress?Continue


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Profile Information

What degree program are you in?
N/A - Faculty
About Me:
Artist, Teacher, Arts Advocate and Lecturer
Activities and interests:
“Apples of My Eye,” 1997

Lourdes S. Guerrero
Crocheted Tapestry

Reflection, by Lourdes S. Guerrero, 2011

Reflection is a core principle of education—at least it still is for teachers. “This is what teachers do on a regular basis…” stated Diane Ravitch in a recent lecture sponsored by the Chicago Teacher’s Union at the UIC Forum. Why doesn’t anyone else do it?

             Our society has become so contentious. People don’t stop and think before saying hateful words, acting in a rash way, or casting their very valuable vote. I’m not guiltless. But I hope I’m the kind of person who can reflect on my actions, admit when I’m wrong, and learn from my mistakes. So often, in attacking “the other,” we forget the humanity of those who view things differently than us. In the past, Americans were so proud of this ability to work together despite difference, but lately we seem to have forgotten the skills of reflection.

            For approximately 30 years, corporate reform in education has pushed for more and more standardized testing. Increased testing leaves no room in the curriculum for reflecting. We have a generation of children, now adults, who have little skill in this. Without the ability to reflect, there is also very little real learning done—not just how to bubble—but real, life-transforming education. The process of taking time to stop and look back over past actions in order to re-assess, allows for learning. And that’s the crux. Individuals have to re-assess FOR THEMSELVES in order to learn.

            The funding for increased standardized testing also leaves no money for school programs that, by their very nature, incorporate reflection in their practice—visual arts, music and creative writing. Still the business financiers (who run school boards) aren’t happy. World Languages and Social Studies classes are now being cut.

            Cutting World Languages at a time when our society is becoming more globalized is ridiculous. Cutting Social Studies, the very program that instructs our children on constitutional history, will leave us a society of people unaware of their rights and duties as American citizens.

            But maybe that’s what corporate “education” reformers really want—a mass of low-wage workers who will not stand up to their bosses because they are ignorant of their rights and lack the ability to reflect on their situation.

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Comment Wall (2 comments)

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At 11:20am on April 14, 2011, S. Bailey Jacobson said…

Hi Lourdes, 


Thanks for writing me back.  Obvious I need to check my own page more often; I just noticed your comment.  I think I wrote a message regarding advocacy for art education in public schools (it was so long ago that I am guessing).  The show you mentioned, 'Art Teachers Redefined' sounds fascinating and I am sorry I missed it.  I am a former public school art teacher and my thesis is focused on the effects of standardization on art classrooms.  I see the loss of art education as an absolutely critical topic in educational policy.  I look forward to continue this discussion on the Ning or in person. 




At 10:49am on October 12, 2009, Lourdes S. Guerrero said…
Working on my paper: "Aesthetics and the Brain" to be presented at the Illinois Art Education Association Conference in November. Gotta go!

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