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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Arts Integration: A Study of Teachers' Perceptions


The concept of arts integration is to incorporate connections to content while relating to the real world. If educators are to compete in a global economy, children deserve every advantage including the arts. Implementing an integrated arts curriculum is both exciting and intimidating to teachers. This study was designed to interview teachers who have undergone the process to determine their perceptions regarding the impact on professional development, student performance, student engagement, and school climate. It was essential to the study that the selected educators be employed at a school that included a fully integrated arts program. Mooreland Heights Elementary School (K-5) was selected because it was in its sixth year of implementation. A purposive sample of teachers from each grade level was selected by the principal to be interviewed. Collected data were coded and reviewed for emerging themes. The three themes that emerged were continuous staff development, connection between arts and content, and support. Upon further examination three areas of support were identified: administrative, parents and community, and corporate. The professional development opportunities provided the teachers participating in the study indicated a high level of involvement. The integrated arts program provided an interdisciplinary approach to curriculum planning. Administrative, community, and corporate support were essential for the success of an arts integrated program.

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