Weaving In the Arts: Widening the Learning Circle

Overview

Weaving In the Arts: Widening the Learning Circle offers new ways for classroom teachers to broaden the definition of literacy to include music, dance, poetry, and the visual arts. The authors share what they have learned from incorporating the fine arts into the daily curriculum: how teachers can help students use the fine arts as a bridge to reading and writing, and as valid ways of interpreting the world around them.

Drawing on the work of Howard Gardner, Elliot Eisner, and ...

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Overview

Weaving In the Arts: Widening the Learning Circle offers new ways for classroom teachers to broaden the definition of literacy to include music, dance, poetry, and the visual arts. The authors share what they have learned from incorporating the fine arts into the daily curriculum: how teachers can help students use the fine arts as a bridge to reading and writing, and as valid ways of interpreting the world around them.

Drawing on the work of Howard Gardner, Elliot Eisner, and others, this book offers an inspired look at a curriculum where the fine arts are viewed as a "methodology" for helping students interpret what they know and understand. The authors begin by describing their own program: how they set up a learning environment conducive to the fine arts, how they reclaimed poetry as a natural response to learning, how they focused upon drawing for understanding. Then they explain how, through immersion "workshops," students "get inside the skin" of creative artists and think about the unique ways these people approach learning. Readers will discover how students:

  • use music, dance, and the visual arts to develop multiple perspectives on their learning of science, math, and the language arts
  • experiment with movement to interpret thinking
  • create student operas as a response to story
  • live and work in workshop environments to view learning from the inside out.

The book also includes extensive annotated bibliographies of books, CDs, audiotapes, and videotapes that teachers can use in curriculum planning.

Although Blecher and Jaffee describe their work in a primary classroom, preservice and inservice teachers at all levels, particularly elementary and middle school, have much to gain from reading this book. It offers a different perspective on the learning process and encourages readers to look at the curriculum in new ways.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Teachers in a first- and second-grade classroom named a Center for Excellence by the NCTE share what they have learned from incorporating the fine arts into the daily curriculum, and demonstrate how teachers can help students use the fine arts as a bridge to reading and writing and as valid ways of interpreting the world around them. They include many examples of student work, plus an annotated bibliography and a list of print, video, and music resources for the classroom. For pre- and in-service teachers in elementary and middle school. No index. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780325000329
  • Publisher: Heinemann
  • Publication date: 4/9/1998
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 211
  • Sales rank: 1,051,041
  • Product dimensions: 7.39 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 0.47 (d)

Meet the Author

Sharon Blecher has been teaching for more than twenty years at Eastwood School in Oberlin, Ohio. For the last eleven years she has taught in a multiage first- and second-grade classroom with Kathy Jaffee. In 1990, their classroom was named a Center of Excellence for Teaching Children at Risk by the NCTE. In 1994, they were awarded a NCTE Teacher-Researcher Grant to study the ways students are empowered in their literacy learning when the fine arts are woven into the curriculum.

Kathy Jaffee has been teaching for more than twenty years at Eastwood School in Oberlin, Ohio. For the last eleven years she has taught in a multiage first- and second-grade classroom with Sharon Blecher. In 1990, their classroom was named a Center of Excellence for Teaching Children at Risk by the NCTE. In 1994, they were awarded a NCTE Teacher-Researcher Grant to study the ways students are empowered in their literacy learning when the fine arts are woven into the curriculum.

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Table of Contents

Building a Foundation

Building a "Languages-Rich" Environment

Poetry Immersion

Art as a Visual Response

Artist Workshop

Opera Workshop

Insights, Interesting Parallels, and Inquiries

Appendixes:

A. Open Room Daily Schedule

B. From Fairy Tale to Opera: A Step-by-Step Approach

C. Thematic Unit Self-Assessment

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