Last year I was curious and I started to to ask myself how the creative arts can benefit learning in other subjects.
As I began to look into my topics of interest I soon found that this idea of using art to teach other subjects has been given a name – interdisciplinary art (Arts Integration)
Arts integration seems to be the best form of differentiation out there because it taps into so many different interests and abilities and forms of learning.’
I was amazed by this theory as an art teacher and it gave me a great sense of joy.
After intensive online searches and introduction to interdisciplinary approach to learning by senior colleague professor ingvar from Finland,
I ask question about schools who practice this experience in nigeria last year and I observed this teaching Methodology is not commonly use by some of us.
An interdisciplinary approach has been at the core of attention in primary school education recently. In this approach, teachers collaborate to invent more effective means of teaching by associating the subjects and activities of a school subject in the curriculum with other subjects.
Interdisciplinary instruction entails the use and integration of methods and analytical frameworks from more than one academic discipline to examine a theme, issue, question or topic.
The hallmark of interdisciplinary education is integration of notions and guiding principles from multiple disciplines to systematically form a more complete, and hopefully coherent, framework of analysis that offers a richer understanding of the issue under examination.
It is clear that insight from a single disciplinary framework is not sufficient to help resolve such a complex issue.
Students who are regularly exposed to classroom conversations and assignments that tackle real-world problems in an interdisciplinary fashion; engage in significant learning, realizing cognitive gains, and are better positioned to understand challenging problems and frame viable solutions.
Before I talk about how to use this art in our curriculum let me take my time to talk about the type of art in school
We have Three Variations of art in school
The arts find their way in to elementary, middle, and high school classrooms every day in a variety of ways. The variations can be distilled into three main categories.
• Arts as Curriculum
• Arts-Enhanced Curriculum
• Arts-Integrated Curriculum
All three variations are important, needed and valid.
*Understanding the differences in the approaches can help teachers and schools make informed choices about the programs they offer.
Art as curriculum
If a school has a music, art, drama or dance teacher, their approach is most likely and primarily art as curriculum. Students develop knowledge and skills in a particular art form. Often referred to as “arts learning” or “art for art’s sake”, the programs are guided by national, state, or local standards for each of the art forms. For example, in visual arts, students learn the content, processes, and techniques for two of three-dimensional work. They developed and changed throughout history and engage in creating and analyzing works created in a variety of media.
When the arts are used as a device or strategy to support other curriculum areas, but no objectives in the art form are explicit, then the approach is called Arts-Enhanced Curriculum. For example, students sing the ABCs as a means to other ends—remembering the letters and sequence of the alphabet. However, students are not usually expected to learn about melody, song structure, or develop specific singing skills.
Arts-Enhanced Curriculum acts as a “hook” to engage students in learning content. Additionally, teachers need little or no training in the art form. Arts-Enhanced Curriculum is often mistaken for Arts-Integrated Curriculum or a distinction is not made between the two.
The one i’m talking about tonight
In Art-integrated Curriculum, the arts become the approach to teaching and the vehicle for learning. Students meet dual learning objectives when they engage in the creative process to explore connections between an art form and another subject area to gain greater understanding. For example, students meet objectives in theater (characterization, stage composition, action, expression) and in social studies. The experience is mutually reinforcing, creating a dramatization provides an authentic context for students to learn more about the social studies content and as students delve deeper into the social studies content their growing understandings impact their dramatizations.
Another example above is an experimental work by year 6 on how the sun appears on earth
Science, art and literary
For Art-Integrated Curriculum to result in deep students in both the art form and the other curriculum area, it requires that teachers engage in professional development to learn about arts standards and how to connect the arts to the curriculum they teach.
In conclusion, understanding this approaches can help narrow or focus objectives as well as help educators select the most appropriate approach based on their objectives. Ultimately, students are best served when all three variations – Arts as Curriculum, Art-Enhanced Curriculum and Arts-Integrated Curriculum-are part of their education.
Thanks you for your time goodnight.