Time: Students combining music performance and ICT skills with computer recording.

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Managing Time

Managing Time
Integrating The Arts

Integration of arts learning can occur both across arts subjects and across other learning areas. Integration strategies provide opportunities for connecting learning to support teachers to maximise their arts learning time in a crowded curriculum. Arts integration at its most powerful relies heavily on a progressive, Focusing on the needs of the students and empowering them to take autonomy for their own learning. approach to learning that involves students in learning that is actively built, experiential, evolving, collaborative, problem-solving and reflective. Arts integration approaches are not a substitute for teaching the arts as separate subjects. Rather, these approaches complement traditional arts learning and help to affirm the relevance of the arts in the school curriculum.

Why integrate across the arts?

While the national arts curriculum is developed as five distinct arts subjects, there are also opportunities to make connections across arts subjects. The Australian Curriculum: The Arts Foundation to Year 10 Draft for consultation (2012) reinforces this position:

The curriculum enables exploration of the dynamic relationships between Arts subjects evident in works from diverse cultures. This might involve students making works in traditional or contemporary forms or using material from one Arts subject to support learning in another. (p.5)

Source: Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA)

Why integrate the arts across other learning areas?

Teachers implementing the arts curriculum should recognise that learning in and through the arts has obvious connections with other learning areas. Students' development of understanding, knowledge and skills in the arts helps make learning real and adds a richness and relevance to learning in other areas.

Rather than being self-contained or fixed, disciplines are interconnected, dynamic and growing. A discipline-based curriculum should allow for cross-disciplinary learning that broadens and enriches each student's learning. (The Shape of the Australian Curriculum, v3.0, p.22, Source: Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA))

Through integrated learning and exploration of real world topics, issues, experiences or ideas, students are provided with a stimulus both to engage in artistic creation and to develop understanding in another learning area.

The Arts embody some of the most significant and recognisable products and records of all cultures. The Arts can provide a range of pedagogies for use across learning areas in the curriculum.
(Australian Curriculum: The Arts Foundation to Year 10 Draft for consultation, 2012, pp.19–20)

Source: Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA)

How to integrate the arts across other learning areas?

The Shape of the Australian Curriculum: The Arts (2011) outlines opportunities to integrate the arts in other learning areas. There are also additional links to integrated resources in the supporting documents.

What makes successful arts integration?

Successful and sustained arts integration requires all key stakeholders to participate in and support the school community's integration efforts. Supportive administrators who encourage teachers to take risks, learn new skills and alter their teaching methods can maximise time across the curriculum by merging arts concepts with content from other learning areas.

This project is funded by the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.