Susan Riley | June 2014

Arts Integration: Incorporating Elements of Art in your Curriculum

Editor’s Note: Today’s post is from Heidi O’Hanley who will be presenting on this topic at our upcoming Connectivity Conference and sharing a preview with you today!

Visual art teachers are always asked how they integrate core subjects into their art lessons.  But what if classroom teachers and specialists could include the arts in their own classroom instruction?  It is always an art teacher’s dream to advocate the importance of the arts to the school and their local community.  Many art teachers struggle to be heard and feel they are left in the shadows of the district’s mission.

My dream came true and earlier this year when my curriculum director asked if I could present how the elements of art align with our district’s mission.  The presentation took place during our teacher’s institute day, and was geared for K-8 classroom teachers and reading specialists.  I took the opportunity to share how the elements of art continuously integrates core subjects into their lessons, and explained how they can also include the elements of art into their own lessons as well.

During my presentation, I will be sharing how any teacher can create a cross-curricular lesson. I will also go over the standards used by our district’s art team, and with the new Core Arts Standards finally released, I hope to shed some light on what the standards are and how they fit in with the common core standards already in place.

We’ll explore some core subject components our art department has been using for grades K-8, as well as how we have integrated core subjects into the art curriculum.  I’ll share project examples inspired by artists such as Henri Matisse, Henri Rousseau, and Paul Klee, and how their unique styles can be tied in with STEM (essentially, making it STEAM!).

Further into the presentation, I will identify ways that classroom teachers can incorporate the elements of art in their own classrooms.  Example projects will be shared to inspire your creativity with your classes!

I can’t wait to share my love for the A in S-T-E-A-M with you!  In the meantime, you can reach me on Twitter @NobleMaiden15 or visit my blog  I’ll see you at the conference!

Register for arts conference, Education Closet

About the Author

Susan Riley is the founder and CEO of The Institute for Arts Integration and STEAM. She focuses on teacher professional development in arts integration, STEAM, 21st century learning skills, and technology. She is also a published author and frequent presenter at national conferences on Arts Integration and STEAM education. Susan holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education from the prestigious Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ and a Master of Science in Education Administration from McDaniel College in Westminster, MD. She lives in Westminster, MD with her husband and daughter. Email Susan