Susan Riley | January 2016

Easy Integrated Lessons for the New Year

For many of you, there are only a few days left of a short winter break.  Who wants to spend them lesson planning?? That’s why I wanted to share a few easy arts integrated lesson ideas with you today. You can pull these out next week, and not have to worry about planning while you’re savoring these last few moments.  These are arts integrated lesson that are sure-fire winners for me at each grade level. They take minimal prep, and get students quickly back into the routine.

Easy Integrated Lesson for the New Year, Education ClosetGrades K-2: Character Pitches (Reading and Theater). 

Children are natural actors.  They do not require an acting class to change their voices or body shapes, and levels to represent a lion or a giant, a mouse or a little boy.  What they may not have, however, is the awareness to intentionally create characters by the use of their voices and bodies.  That’s where this integrated lesson can help!

Easy Integrated Lesson for the New Year, Education ClosetGrades 3-5: Tangram Shape Art (Math and Visual Art). 

Tangrams are such a great manipulative for spatial reasoning and geometric concepts, and it seems as natural a connection to visual art as any! Grandfather Tang’s Story is a great tool to bring these two contents together.

Easy Integrated Lessons for the New Year, Education ClosetGrades 6-8: Museum of the Arts (Literacy and Visual Art). 

In this integrated lesson plan, students are using the poetry of Robert Frost to help them synthesize how choices are made and presenting those choices through the arts into a museum which they curate as a group.

Easy Integrated Lessons for the New Year, Education ClosetGrades 9-12: Epic Improvisation (Literacy and Music). 

By teaching the idea of epic poetry as an act of speaking and listening about a topic that is of significant cultural or heroic importance through improvisation in music, students are much more inclined to work through the text itself to build an understanding of this oral and written tradition.

And if none of these lessons are exactly what you’re looking for, try searching our entire library of over 60 lessons.  I’m sure you’ll find one or two in there that will spark your interest.

Hopefully, these lessons give you peace of mind and allow you to really enjoy the start of the new year.  I wish you a wonderful time of reflection, warmth and joy this weekend.  Now…put away the planner and get on with your agenda of sleeping, eating and playing!

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