Arts in Education
Arts Link©: Building Mathematics and Science Competencies through an Arts Integration Model
Arts Link©: Building Mathematics and Science Competencies through an Arts Integration Model, 2010-2014; is a quasi-experimental, research program of the Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership to work with four School District of Philadelphia schools to test the efficacy of the arts to support mathematics and science skill acquisition through application of PAEP’s Skills Alignment Model for students in grades 2-5.
As Arts Link: Building Mathematics and Science Competencies through an Arts Integration Model begins its third year of model development, the instruments created by PAEP to facilitate planning and implementation of content have been redesigned to meet the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS) that the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has adopted this year. Professional development for teachers and teaching artists emphasized these new standards and included instruction on how to reinforce learning using both the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects for K-5 as well as the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.
This translates in science to more research by students using non-fiction texts and primary sources, which includes conducting experiments and collecting data to answer the essential questions that guide their projects. Students are expected at all grade levels to write about their research and findings throughout the course of the year. In meeting the Common Core State Standards for mathematics, Arts Link’s arts integrated projects emphasis the relationship between a concept and skill in mathematics and how that concept and skill can be further understood by students when it is translated through a visual art project that they create. This process allows students to understand concepts and practice skill acquisition to reinforce learning using multiple experiences.
The Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership (PAEP) is pleased to present the second year of Arts Link: Building Competencies in Mathematics and Science Using an Arts Integration Model, a research project funded by a four-year $1.1 million grant from the United States Department of Education, Office of Innovation and Improvement, Arts in Education Model Development and Dissemination Program (AEMDD). This support allows PAEP to expand the scope of its research on arts integration best practices and to refine its arts alignment model for future replication.
Arts Link was developed in response to findings from earlier work integrating the arts with elementary grade level reading and writing curricula to promote literacy skill acquisition through an AEMDD grant made to the School District of Philadelphia in collaboration with PAEP in 2006. The most notable success of this prior project, Arts Bridges, reported a 20% increase in reading proficiency among participating students over those in the corresponding control group, a stunning achievement for an urban, inner-city school district. The results of Arts Bridges also indicated that to maximize the impact of an arts integration program, students need to be introduced to this learning approach earlier in their educational careers. Therefore, PAEP designed the Arts Link program to reach students as early as second through fifth grade in four School District of Philadelphia schools with a corresponding complement of eight control schools. This school based program is implemented by teaching and learning teams led by the art teacher and comprised of two participating classroom teachers per grade level with a master teaching artist in residence for 8 months during the school year. Each cohort teaching/learning team receives ongoing extensive professional development that explores ways in which to effectively integrate critical grade-level mathematics and science skills with arts curricula, as defined by the District’s content area goals. An arts integrated program infrastructure has been established, upon which to develop scope and sequence curricula for classroom implementation utilizing PAEP’s skills and concepts alignment with co-teaching models. Continual assessment of these instruments has led to their refinement, which improves the ease and effectiveness of their use as collaborative tools by participants in this study.
While mathematics was targeted as the core academic content area with which to integrate an art making project for the first year, science curricula added in year two became a driving force in many of the schools, and a number of the unit projects found ways to significantly integrate mathematics and science with the arts. Working with classroom teachers and art teachers, artists facilitated art making projects tied to curricula required to be learned during each marking period. Thirty sessions with the teaching artists engaged students in very specific skills development. Learning goals based on the mathematics and science curriculum for each grade level and activities to support those goals were developed through a collaborative planning process and implemented through a co-teaching model that engaged teachers as partners in the process by highlighting their academic expertise to help students make the skills and concept connections between the arts and the academics being taught.
Click here to see Arts Link Year Two Catalog
The Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership (PAEP) has conducted research into best practices in arts integration in K-12 settings for over ten years. This research has led PAEP to become a 2010 recipient of a $1.1 million United Sates Department of Education, Office of Innovation and Improvement, Arts in Education Model Development & Dissemination Grant. Arts Link: Building Competencies in Mathematics and Science using an Arts Integrated Model will allow PAEP to expand its scope using its arts alignment model to build mathematics and science skills over a four year period. This quasi-experimental research project grew out of another AEMDD grant, Arts Bridges: Building Literacy Through an Integrated Arts Collaborative Model, previously made to The School District of Philadelphia to work with PAEP to build literacy skills and develop pro-social behaviors in underserved students in grades 4, 5, and 6th.
Building upon Arts Bridges’ most notable success improving literacy skills and attendance with fourth grade boys, PAEP recognized the need to engage students earlier in their educational process. Therefore, PAEP designed the Arts Link program to impact learning in students in second through fifth grades at four School District of Philadelphia schools. The school based programs are facilitated by teaching and learning teams led by the art teacher and comprised of two participating classroom teachers per grade level and a master teaching artist in residence for 8 months during the school year. Each cohort teaching/learning team received extensive professional development to address critical grade-level mathematics and science skills across content area goals as defined by the District’s core curriculum, establish an arts-integrated program infrastructure, and develop scope and sequence curricula for classroom implementation using PAEP’s skills alignment and co-teaching models furthering the development of these models for the field. Ongoing professional development and program evaluation will build teacher capacity over time and help insure sustainability of the program model beyond the initial grant period.
Mathematics was targeted as the core academic content area with which to integrate an art making project for the first year. Working with classroom teachers, artists facilitated pilot art making projects of 10 to 12 sessions to engaged students in very specific skill development. Learning goals based on the mathematics curriculum for each grade level and activities to support those goals were developed through a collaborative planning process.
Click here to see Arts Link Year One Catalog