Showing posts from January, 2009

Let President Obama know the importance of the arts in education

My good friend, Lesley University professor and movement educator Doug Victor sent me this letter after we had traded numerous emails regarding integrating the arts in education. In it he asks everyone who is so moved to contact President Obama and remind him of the importance of the arts in education. So, I'm posting it here in hopes that some of you who read it will feel compelled to contact the President.

Hi, Everyone,

Hope this finds you all well and inspired in your lives and your teaching. I am writing to ask you to consider giving our newly inaugurated President some feedback about his plan for Educational Reform.

I know how committed you all are to teaching creatively through the arts so I thought this might be the perfect opportunity to have your voice be heard in concert with other past Creative Arts and Learning Lesley students from around the country with whom I have had the joy to get to know.

First make sure you watch the 2 following powerful and thought-provoking videos…

"Not on the Test" by Tom Chapin. You have to watch this!

Click on the title of this post and listen to the song and watch the video by songwriter Tom Chapin called "Not on the Test" It really gets to the heart of the matter regarding the growing trend of "teaching to the test" and the return to rote education. It also serves to underscore the importance of integrating the arts into the curriculum. This is something that should be shared with policy makers, administrators, teachers, parents, and students alike.

Here are the lyrics:

Not On The Test
by John Forster & Tom Chapin
© 2008 Limousine Music Co. & The Last Music Co. (ASCAP)

Go on to sleep now, third grader of mine.
The test is tomorrow but you'll do just fine.
It's reading and math, forget all the rest.
You don't need to know what is not on the test.

Each box that you mark on each test that you take,
Remember your teachers, their jobs are at stake.
Your score is their score, but don't get all stressed.
They'd never teach anything not on the test.


Participant Reflections on Integrated Teaching Through the Arts k-12 Workshop January 2009

Everyone had a great day at our Integrated Teaching Through the Arts workshop at Barnstable High School on January 16th. Focusing on Creative Movement, Poetry, Music and Drama, the day was full of energy and engagement. Here are some reflections from the participants.

Great workshop, now we are all ready to move in our classrooms. It has
brought the fun back into teaching!

This workshop was incredible and rejuvinating!! I've already started
making a list of activities that I can do with my first graders to go
along with what we are learning about now. I can't wait!!! A big

This workshop introduces methods that can be adapted to fit any level or subject area by providing simple yet far-reaching practices that enhance students' thinking and creativity.

This workshop was very successful in addressing my interests and needs. This was one of the best workshops I've ever had.

I liked how the workshop flowed from one activity to another. Sometimes we sat and then we'd …