I'm knee-deep in writing my Master's Capstone with a completion date of next Spring 2021. I find the research about integrating art within the learning environment affirming and fascinating. So what exactly is "arts-integration"? Glad you asked.
For that answer, I'm using this definition from Helen Robinson: "Arts Integration is teaching collaboratively engaging all students to promote learning through and with the arts." (Robinson, 2013).
Perhaps it is easier to define arts integration by saying what it is not. Arts integration is NOT arts and crafts. It is not tacking on endless craft activities to a reading of a novel or math lesson. It isn't activities that take away from instructional time, filling students time with busy work that is simply busy work.
Arts integration is using evidence based, rigorous curriculum and using art (writing, music, painting, drawing, sculpting) that connects students to core subjects like reading, math, science, and geography.
While the focus of my paper is how this approach benefits students with learning disabilities, my research has affirmed a belief I've had for a long time: good teaching for students with disabilities is good teaching for all students. My hope is that my research will lead me deeper into these ideas so that I can provide many access points for students to learn.
I've decided to re-name this blog to better reflect the direction of my paper and my thinking.
Robinson, A. H. (2013). Arts Integration and the Success of Disadvantages Students: A Research Evaluation.
A Research Evaluation. Arts Education Policy Review, 114(4), 191-204.