I began my research with the intention of discovering in what ways elementary teachers incorporate the fine arts across the curriculum. For those teachers who do, I wanted to know where they learned how to do so, and how their students respond to the integration of the arts. I have a strong personal connection to this topic. The fine arts always have been an integral part of my life, which I attribute to my education: my teachers introduced me to the arts and fostered my love of the arts. From an educational standpoint, I began to wonder how teachers incorporate the arts, in order to learn ideas and approaches that I might adopt as a future educator.
My original proposal was to explore the arts across the curriculum as a means to learn how educators incorporated the arts as part of the overall education of their students. I had some concerns that the special programs in arts would be eliminated when budget cuts occurred in school districts. How could teachers then sustain the arts education and experiences in their classrooms? While I followed through with my plans to explore why and how the arts can be incorporated, I chose not to focus on schools that had eliminated the fine mts as "specials". Although this remains a concern, schools that have eliminated the arts are not the only elementary programs necessary to address. There is no such thing as overexposure to the arts, so even those students who are fortunate to experience special art, music, drama, and dance classes in their schools could benefit from an integrated arts curriculum within the classroom as well.
Gilbert '00, Emily, "Integrating the Fine Arts Across the Elementary Curriculum" (2000). Honors Projects. 1.