From New Leader to Education Innovator: 5 Ways to Learn About Arts Integration
The Impact of Arts Integration on LearningAs a former elementary teacher and visual artist with a music background, I can personally attest to the power of arts integration in the classroom. I have seen firsthand how incorporating the arts into my lessons can engage students and make learning more enjoyable and memorable.
For example, when teaching a unit on the solar system, I incorporated a visual art project in which students created a 3D model of a planet. I taught them and expected them to use the visual arts vocabulary alongside the science vocabulary as they planned, executed, and shared their projects. Instead of just painting their work, they had to make visual choices about color and texture related to the science understandings and be able to explain those choices. By allowing students to use their creativity and express themselves through art, they were able to connect with the material in a more meaningful way and retain the information better.
In addition to my personal experiences, I have also seen the impact of arts integration on a larger scale. As an artist, I have worked with organizations that provide arts education opportunities to underserved communities. I have seen how the arts can provide a way for students from diverse backgrounds to express themselves and learn in a way that is culturally relevant and meaningful to them.
The Importance of Arts Integration for Education LeadersArts integration is an approach that integrates the arts into all areas of the curriculum, including math, science, language arts, and social studies. By integrating the arts into these subjects, students can develop critical thinking skills, creativity, and problem-solving skills, which are essential for academic success and life skills. Arts integration has been shown to improve student engagement, motivation, and overall academic achievement.
Overall, I believe that arts integration is a valuable tool for new education leaders to create a positive school culture. By prioritizing arts programs and resources, leaders can promote creativity, innovation, and academic success among students, while also addressing issues of equity and access. I encourage all education leaders to consider the benefits of arts integration and to take a collaborative and inclusive approach to implementing it in their schools.
Attend professional development workshops and conferences
Here are 5 ways that new leaders in education can learn about arts integration:
Professional development workshops and conferences are great opportunities for new leaders in education to learn about arts integration. These events often feature presentations and workshops by experts in the field who can provide valuable insights and resources for incorporating the arts into the curriculum. By attending these events, new leaders can network with other educators and gain valuable knowledge and skills to improve their practice.
Connect with organizations that support arts integration
There are many organizations that support arts integration in education, such as the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Mississippi Whole Schools, and the National Art Education Association. These organizations offer resources, workshops, and advocacy for arts integration in education. By connecting with these organizations, new leaders in education can gain access to valuable resources and networking opportunities.
Collaborate with educators who specialize in arts integration
Collaboration is key to effective arts integration. New leaders in education should seek out educators who specialize in arts integration and collaborate with them to develop strategies for incorporating the arts into the curriculum. By working together, educators can create a cohesive and integrated approach to teaching that supports student learning and engagement. (P.S. I'm also always available to collab! It's my favorite thing to do. You can connect with me here.)
Incorporate arts integration into teacher training and professional development
New leaders in education should prioritize the inclusion of arts integration in teacher training and professional development. This can include incorporating arts integration into teacher preparation programs, offering workshops and training sessions on arts integration, and providing ongoing support and resources for educators who are incorporating the arts into their teaching practice.
Prioritize funding for arts programs and resources
Arts integration requires resources, such as materials, equipment, and personnel. New leaders in education should prioritize funding for arts programs and resources to support effective arts integration. This can include securing grants, fundraising, and advocating for increased funding for arts education.
Final ThoughtsArts integration is an effective model for positive school cultural change that can improve student engagement, motivation, and academic achievement. As a new leader in education, it is essential to learn all you can about arts integration and incorporate it into your school’s curriculum and culture. By attending professional development workshops, connecting with organizations, collaborating with educators who specialize in arts integration, incorporating arts integration into teacher training and professional development, and prioritizing funding for arts programs and resources, new leaders can create a positive and supportive learning environment that fosters creativity, innovation, and academic success.