Both in the Netherlands and in Flanders, cultural education is a fixed part of the curriculum at primary schools. This is a part of the subject area of artistic orientation in the Netherlands. The core goals of this subject area are that pupils learn to express themselves through artistic means, that they learn to reflect on their own work and that of others, and that they are introduced to art and culture. Similar educational goals are set in Flanders. At the moment, the University of Groningen in the Netherlands is developing a framework for cultural education called “Cultuur in de Spiegel” (Culture in the Mirror).
The goals that have been formulated for the lower-level classes of secondary school in the Netherlands are comparable: exploring the expressiveness of art, presenting self-made artistic work, learning to view and listen to art, depicting one’s own experiences, and reflecting on art. In Flanders, secondary education comprises a number of study areas involving culture, on top of a specifically art-oriented course. This course is called kunstsecundair onderwijs (art secondary education), and is divided into ballet, visual arts and performance arts. In Dutch secondary schools, culture plays a part in the following classes: Dutch, Modern Foreign Languages, History, Literature, Art Classes, Artistic and Cultural Education, and Classical Cultural Education.
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