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Teacher’s Guide for Adding Art Literacy to Lesson Plans

Art literacy guide for Oregon teachers.
Image Credit – New Africa/

Teachers – adding art literacy to your curriculum always starts with your lesson plans. And with the new school year quickly approaching, now is the perfect time to integrate art literacy into the daily lessons you teach. Kids need art to develop physically, emotionally and socially. So whether you teach preschool, elementary or middle school students, you can make a difference with effective lesson planning.

How to Integrate Art Literacy Into Daily Lesson Plans

Learning art literacy builds an understanding and appreciation of art, with the ability to interpret and find meaning from images and artistic expression. Beyond simply enjoying the creative arts (a great benefit unto itself), the concept of art literacy helps children analyze, critique and create visual imagery.

Use Art in Warm-Up Activities

Try starting the class with a visual prompt related to the concept of the lesson. You could use a photograph, slogan, cartoon or painting to convey an idea in art, math, history, science or any other subject. For younger students, our art projects for preschoolers could provide some ideas.

Combine Art and Literature

One of the most important benefits of art is the refining of communication skills. As a child develops they learn about written communication, non-verbal communication, how images convey meaning and more. In one of the popular lesson plans from Golden Road Arts, the teacher is encouraged to read a story, then have students create art based on its message.

Incorporate Art Into History Lessons

During history lessons, children learn about the different cultural, political and social factors connected with a particular time. Looking at paintings, sculptures and architecture of the chosen era, art is one of the best ways to bring a historical period to life. You could also introduce the lives and works of great artists and art styles like impressionism, surrealism and fine art. Take a look at these art projects for middle school students for an art history lesson to try.

Combine Math and Art

Geometry and art can go hand-in-hand, with cubism and fractal art being two of the styles that incorporate geometric shapes. By illustrating concepts like fractals and symmetry during lessons, children gain a clearer understanding of math ideas.

Use Art in Science

Many topics can be incorporated into a lesson, such as learning about chemistry along with the processes involved in ceramics. Physics, chemistry and biology all benefit from visual aids, and children often learn faster when they can create art from a broad scientific concept. Our art projects for elementary school students list includes a fun solar system design lesson.

Teach Languages Through Art

Learning foreign languages is also enhanced with the use of art literacy. Teachers can craft lessons that require students to paint words and phrases that can be displayed as art in the classroom. Cognitive development and cultural awareness are among the many benefits of art literacy. Art lessons based around different languages and varied cultures help foster these benefits.

Create Multimedia Presentations

Multimedia presentations enable students to integrate multiple subjects and learning styles into a single project. Collages are an effective way to include various disciplines, with found content from nature, books, magazines and general art supplies all combining to produce a multi-faceted presentation.

Access Free Art Literacy Videos for Teachers’ Lesson Plans

At Golden Road Arts, we create a broad range of art literacy and instructional classes for children of all ages. Access our tutorials or join us at one of our in-person events in Oregon. Watch our free art lessons today.

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