How does arts integration help learning?
The curriculum at Kinsella Magnet School is strongly integrated with the performing arts and aligns with national and state education standards. Our interactive approach to learning affords students the opportunity to make relevant connections from text to life and emotionally invest in the learning process. Infused rigorous academic plans with performing art disciplines provide stimulating opportunities for students to retain the academic content and profoundly express their ideas.
HOT Schools, (Higher Order Thinking Schools)
Kinsella is a HOT School and is supported by the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism with master teaching artist visits, professional development and standards based arts integration. In HOT schools, the arts are rigorous academic subjects, each with its own sequential curriculum that conveys knowledge not learned through other academic disciplines. HOT schools integrate the arts across disciplines, creating arts-rich environments that motivate students to make connections between and among subject areas and ideas. HOT schools cultivate a democratic school culture to which all members of the school community contribute and in which individual leadership is emphasized. The HOT approach is reflected in a school’s commitment to child centered, experiential, arts integrated teaching and learning. In an arts infused environment, the processes of creating, performing and responding lead to increased achievement, increased attendance by students and staff, lower rates of retention, higher self-esteem, decreased discipline problems, greater parent participation and a growing sense of community.
Teaching artists from the Bushnell Partners program visit the Pre kinder, Kindergarten and 1st grade students and work with them to strengthen reading skills such as retelling, sequencing, character detail, word pattern. PARTNERS (Partners in Arts and Education Revitalizing Schools) is an award-winning arts education program conducted in many schools throughout central Connecticut. The PARTNERS approach consists of integrating components, which, in turn, are closely tied to core educational requirements and specific learning goals to improve language arts skills for school children.
Tom Lee, Resident Storyteller
Tom Lee is working with students in grades two and three on main idea, summarizing, retelling, prediction, decoding word meaning, sequence, character and setting. For twelve years, Tom Lee has brought traditional stories into classrooms for grades K-12. His repertoire includes stories designed to connect with curricula in many subjects and to meet the emotional and developmental needs of different classes. Check out Tom’s website! www.tomleestoryteller.com
Hartbeat Ensemble works with grades six through eight and connects the impact of real world issues to the lives students through a process of dramatic exploration. Hartbeat Ensemble’s educational programs teach both youth and adults to use theater as a tool for personal and social change. Through work inspired by Augusto Boal's Theater of the Oppressed, they guide participants to explore ways to alter current situations, external or internal, which adversely affect their lives. HartBeat received a Best of Hartford Award in the 2004, 2006, 2007 and 2008 Hartford Advocate Readers Poll. HartBeat is dedicated to creating new works that challenge the status quo. They create original, professional theater based on stories from our community.
7th and 8th grade students workshop their poetry with Elizabeth Thomas and participate in an interdistrict poetry slam with Two River’s School in East Hartford and Lyme Middle School in Old Lyme, CT. Elizabeth Thomas is a widely published poet, performer, teacher and advocate of the arts. The author of two poetry collections and one book on writing for youth and teachers, she has read her work throughout the United States. She's been a member of three Connecticut National Poetry Slam teams and in 1998 was a member of the U.S. team that traveled to Sweden. The program promotes literacy and the power of the written and spoken word. As an outstanding advocate of youth in the arts, Elizabeth Thomas is a coach and organizer with Brave New Voices: International Youth Poetry Slam and Festival. She is also the founder of UpWords Poetry, a company dedicated to promoting programs for young writers and educators, based on the belief that poetry is meant to be heard out loud and in person.
The Judy Dworin Performance Project Inc.
(JDPP) was founded in 1989 as a nonprofit umbrella organization based in Hartford, Connecticut, to provide support for individual artists. JDPP sees its role in the community as further building a diverse and innovative cultural mix of offerings at the highest professional level and giving voice to populations who have been silent or unheard. The work of the organization endeavors to reach the hearts and minds of those involved whether as audience or workshop participants in a process that reminds us of our collective humanity.