Artists-in-Education Residency Impact on Reaching Core Curriculum Content Standards
Observing, understanding, creating and critiquing a particular art form are the essential elements that constitute AIE residency programs. The New Jersey Core Curriculum Contend Standards (hereby know as the “CCCS”) in the Visual and Performing Arts also focus on the aforementioned skills. With this shared sense of purpose, both the AIE residency program and the CCCS seek to enrich students’ lives through the arts by affording them experiences in a variety of mediums. As stated in the standards, the knowledge a student gains by actively participating in arts learning will only serve to broaden their educational experiences. The AIE residencies provide that expanded arts palette while maintaining a structured educational framework in which the standards are readily visible.
- The CCCS 1.1 focuses on the development of an aesthetic knowledge from which a student can learn how to extract meanings, express appreciation and assign values to works of art. An AIE residency first and foremost exposes students to specific art form(s) and provides them with the language to interpret and understand it. Artists utilize their domainspecific vocabulary to help explain the elements of their art form. In doing so, students gain the ability to not only express their own aesthetic values but also extend those values into their own creations. In addition, the residency exposure is geared towards igniting a student’s own personal, social and cultural connections through that art form and ultimately expressing those feelings through an original composition.
- The CCCS 1.2 provides that students participate in the active creation of an art form. This process of art making is absolutely at the core of the AIE Residency program. In addition, the placement of high quality teaching artists in the classroom allows students to be exposed to a level of art form not available through traditional educational materials such as texts and multimedia. Students engage in both structured and improvisational art making experiences whether it is in the visual or performing arts based mediums. As a direct example of these ongoing art making opportunities, students create a culminating performance/exhibit that demonstrates the skills they have gained throughout the residency. In turn, exposure to high quality teaching artists will provide students a greater insight into the career opportunities available in the visual and performing arts.
- The CCCS 1.3 states that students must be able to demonstrate an understanding of the elements and principles utilized in the creation of specific art forms. These fundamentals are broken down into teachable units during the residency to best capture the foundation of the medium. Within the AIE residency program, individualized consultations are made with school administrators and arts teachers to best combine educational goals as related to the curriculum with the principals behind the residency program. The elements and principals are clearly outlined in the lesson plans utilized during the residency. The plans ultimately create the building blocks from which a students’ individual creation is born thereby imbedding the elements and principles behind an art form directly in the students’ repertoire.
- The CCCS 1.4 outlines a student’s need to develop knowledge of critique and the methods that surround it. In order to effectively participate in the creation of an art form, a student needs to be aware of the critical systems that guide its meriting process. As part of the AIE residency process, students are exposed to examples of that art medium from a variety of sources. These sources include demonstrations by the teaching artist, exposure to the work of visiting artists, field trips to performances / exhibits / arts facilities as well as traditional educational resources. It is through this exposure that students are provided with the tools, language and exposure necessary to appropriately engage in the critique process. Teaching artists impart not only the proper language to utilize during a critique but also help students develop the sensitivity needed to understand the subtleties of artist intentions.
- The CCCS 1.5 emphasizes the importance of understanding the essential role the arts have played in world cultures and society as a whole. The AIE residency programs are frequently based in multicultural art forms as a response to both the diversity of roster artists and to the needs of culturally rich school districts. The residency programs seeks to impart a knowledge of both current and past art forms to the students so they can be better informed as to the role of art in their culture and ultimately society. In addition, artists seek to connect their art medium with historical occurrences as a way to strengthen their program across the curriculum. Interdisciplinary lessons are encouraged as a part of the residency lessons, the professional development sessions and curricular extensions after the project has been completed.
See http://www.state.nj.us/education/cccs/ for current standards.