The other week I attended the Arts Education in Maryland Schools Alliance (AEMS) annual Café. The topic at hand was integrating the arts into the core academic curriculum – i.e. using arts to teach math, history, etc. While I support an integrated curriculum, I was struck by the focus on bringing the arts as a SUBJECT or tool for learning into the academic classroom, not necessarily bringing the arts TEACHERS, as the integrated arts model stressed teaching the academic teachers to incorporate arts projects and teaching into their teaching plans.
While I strongly encourage all teachers to take advantage of the wonderful skills arts can provide in learning, I am concerned that the integration model may lead to the further evaporation of qualified arts teachers in our schools. This particular fear was furthered by a discussion of integration as a timely choice in tight economic times –instead of a social studies teacher and a studio art teacher, how about a social studies teacher who can incorporate studio arts? In my opinion, the integration needs to occur across the board – the arts into math classes, AS WELL AS math into the arts classes, not merely the combining of them into one class.
In NDEO’s green paper on the Future of Dance Education, the fourth threat keeping dance education at risk in American schools is the issue of: “What is dance education? Who teaches it? Read the rest of this entry »