about arts integration menomonie

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"At the
Heart of Education
is the
Teacher"

Arts Integration Menomonie (A.I.M.) is a grant-funded organization based at the University of Wisconsin-Stout and partnered with the School District of the Menomonie Area.  Through this university and school district partnership, A.I.M. supports pre-service and early career teachers by expanding and strengthening their instructional methods through arts integration.  In addition, A.I.M. strives to enhance teacher well-being through mindfulness practices.

a.i.m. directs its efforts around tEACHER RETENTION

  1. Increase the confidence and quality of teachers by deepening their capacity to integrate the arts into their instructional practices.

  2. Encourage supportive collegial networks among teachers through co-teaching residencies and internships, shared professional development, and systems of mentoring.

  3. Enhance teacher well-being through mindfulness practices for personal and classroom use.

A.I.M.'s CORE PROGRAMS include:

These programs are designed to ENHANCE teachers':

  • instructional AND CURRICULAR “tool kit” THAT includeS arts SKILLS

  • NETWORK OF support AND COLLABORATION

  • COMPETENCE IN TEACHING

  • Confidence IN TEACHING

  • HAPPINESS IN TEACHING

  • OVERALL well-being


long-term goals of AIM:

  • Establish a sustainable network of schools/programs committed to arts integration as an approach to teaching that yields increased teacher quality and retention, specifically for developing teachers and early career teachers.

  • Build commitment to and skilled teaching practice for arts integration within schools.

  • Advance pre-service and career teachers’ abilities to plan, instruct, and assess quality arts integration.

  • Enhance pre-service and early career teachers’ abilities to bring creativity and optimism into their classrooms and (re-)establish joy and resilience into their own lives as teachers.

  • Create school cultures that support intensive, sustained teacher professional development and collaboration.

UW-Stout students at the Child and Family Study Center engage in creative play with the 3-5 year olds.

UW-Stout students at the Child and Family Study Center engage in creative play with the 3-5 year olds.

2nd graders wear costumes and act out their stories about Pioneer life.

2nd graders wear costumes and act out their stories about Pioneer life.

Pictured above:  "Arts Night" with Mrs. Bossany and her Kindergarters, as they enact their stories and sing with Teaching Artist, Mr. Beau.  This is A.I.M.'s  C.I.T.A. program: Co-teaching In and Through the Arts .

Pictured above:  "Arts Night" with Mrs. Bossany and her Kindergarters, as they enact their stories and sing with Teaching Artist, Mr. Beau.  This is A.I.M.'s C.I.T.A. program: Co-teaching In and Through the Arts.

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Our mission

TO ENHANCE TEACHER COMPETENCE, CONFIDENCE, AND WELL-BEING THROUGH COLLABORATIVE EFFORTS TO INFUSE ARTS INTEGRATION PRACTICES INTO THE TEACHER'S INSTRUCTIONAL TOOLKIT.

Our VISION

TO IMPROVE THE RETENTION OF TEACHERS IN THE TEACHING PROFESSION BEYOND THEIR FIRST FIVE YEARS.

TO CELEBRATE AND HONOR THE TEACHING PROFESSION.

TO INSPIRE OTHERS TO BECOME TEACHERS.

Our Values

WE VALUE:

THE TEACHING PROFESSION
"At the Heart of Education is the Teacher."

THE ARTS
The arts are a universal language through which we can reach and teach each other in meaningful ways. 

APPLIED LEARNING
Teachers freely explore various forms of art so as to experience joy in art making, personally and with students. 

COLLABORATION
Teachers experience teamwork and support as they plan, practice, and reflect on new ways of teaching. 

MINDFULNESS
Teachers learn mindfulness practices to support their own well-being in order to best support students.

DREAMS
If you believe in something with your heart and mind, dreams can become reality.

Click on the image to view the Year 2 report.

Click on the image to view the Year 2 report.

A.I.M.’S research PROJECT

the research says:

The most important factor in a child’s education is his/her teacher.* 

THE PROBLEM:

The national statistic is that we lose nearly 50% of teachers before the end of their fifth year.  Presently, there is a significant national teacher shortage.** 

THE proposed SOLUTION:

A.I.M. believes that we can improve teacher competence, confidence, and well-being, and thereby retain teachers in education, by training and inspiring teachers to use the arts in their instructional practices and to use mindfulness as a personal practice.

Poster presentation from Mindfulness research. (March 2018) (click to enlarge).

Poster presentation from Mindfulness research. (March 2018) (click to enlarge).

we know:

Learning in and through the arts impacts learners so much as they experience enhanced performance, confidence, and well-being. As a result, more learners want to come to school and stay in school.

we want to know (proposed hypothesis):

Teaching in and through the arts impacts teachers so much as they experience enhanced performance, confidence, and well-being.  As a result, more people want to become teachers and stay teachers.


Teaching artist Kris Winter and preschool teacher Marcia Wolf integrate storytelling into the preschool curriculum at UW-Stout's Child and Family Study Center.

Teaching artist Kris Winter and preschool teacher Marcia Wolf integrate storytelling into the preschool curriculum at UW-Stout's Child and Family Study Center.

DEFINED

Arts Integration is:

"An approach to teaching in which students construct and demonstrate understanding through an art form. Students engage in a creative process, which connects an art form and another subject area and meets evolving objectives in both."
 -Defining Arts Integration by Lynne B. Silverstein and Sean Layne, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

Co-Teaching is:

Two or more teachers working together with groups of students; sharing the planning, organization, delivery, and assessment of instruction, as well as the physical space (Bacharach, Heck & Dank, 2004).

A pre-service teacher is:

A university student who is studying and practicing to become a teacher.

A Teaching Artist is:

An accomplished artist in his/her field.
Experienced in working with young people in educational settings.


Early career teacher Tanya Staatz and her kindergarten students sing a song about Earth Day.

Early career teacher Tanya Staatz and her kindergarten students sing a song about Earth Day.

Pre-service teacher Olivia Revolinski gains additional hands-on experience through community art teaching internships.

Pre-service teacher Olivia Revolinski gains additional hands-on experience through community art teaching internships.

BENEFITS

BENEFITS OF ARTS INTEGRATION:

  • Arts integration schools are outperforming conventional arts or traditional “academic” schools.

  • Students in arts integration environments experience self-expression, creativity, problem solving, self-confidence, and motivation, as they develop skills and habits of mind that will be needed in future careers.

  • Using an arts integration teaching approach fosters engagement and interest in learning by students, increasing attendance and reducing behavioral problems in the classroom, thus making the teaching and learning experience more positive.

  • Teachers who engage in arts integration will have more tools to use to deliver their curriculum and engage students actively in learning, thus making teachers more competent and confident in their teaching abilities.

BENEFITS OF APPLIED and collaborative LEARNING:

  • Pre-service teachers who have access to more opportunities to practice teaching, to observe others teaching, to reflect on their experiences, and to receive feedback on their teaching will have a smoother induction to the teaching profession.

  • Teachers who work collaboratively and have regular supportive communication with colleagues and administrators are more likely to stay in the profession.


3rd grade teacher Lisa Jasper and student share a smile as they wear their character berets.

3rd grade teacher Lisa Jasper and student share a smile as they wear their character berets.

REFERENCES

* https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20141108135615-141964205-the-single-most-important-factor-in-improving-education-great-teachers
* http://www.greatschools.org/gk/articles/what-makes-a-great-teacher/
* http://www.rand.org/education/projects/measuring-teacher-effectiveness/teachers-matter.html
** http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2012/05/16/kappan_ingersoll.h31.html  (Ingersoll, 2003; Ingersoll & Perda, in press)
** http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/11909401/Half-of-teachers-could-leave-the-profession-in-two-years.html

A.I.M.'S CORE PROGRAMS

Arts Integration Menomonie (A.I.M.) offers programs in which pre-service and career teachers have access to hand-on arts learning and teaching opportunities in Menomonie's schools, university, and community. As a focal point for interaction and capacity building, the arts offer new models and modes of teaching via co-creation with students. Collaborative by design, A.I.M.’s C.I.T.A. and P.A.I.N.T. programs offer creative explorations of the arts and teaching through which new and veteran teachers embrace risk taking as an avenue for growth and understanding. Mindfulness

EXPLORe - INTEGRATE - REFLECT

The first part of learning is discovery, and learning to teach is no different. A.I.M. teachers discover the artists and teachers within themselves through programs that involve exploration, integration, and reflection.

Teachers EXPLORE making and performing through artful creation with support. Experiential designing, making and/or performing opportunities expand teachers’ capacity to use (and teach) the arts.

Pre-service teachers EXPLORE teaching through added practicum experiences with students. Observing experienced teachers, practice-teaching lessons and methods, writing lesson plans, receiving feedback; and reflecting on their professional growth significantly impacts an emerging teacher’s perception of what it means to be a teacher.

Teachers and pre-service teachers EXPLORE mindfulness practices to support personal well-being amidst the social, emotional, and cognitive demands of teaching. Training for mindful awareness, stress reduction, and emotion regulation aims at increasing teacher wellness which ultimately has implications on the emotional climate of their classrooms.

Teachers INTEGRATE the arts as a process and product by which students can demonstrate understanding of a subject. Teachers connect an art skill to a specific curriculum area that they already teach, where students learn about both the subject area and the art form.

Teachers INTEGRATE skills of mindfulness of the breath, sound into their daily lives and into their classroom practices as a means to manage stress, regulate emotion, and promote a positive classroom environment.

Teachers REFLECT on the impact of their arts, teaching, and mindfulness experiences in relation to their development as teachers. Through A.I.M.’s programs, new and emerging teachers analyze their competence, confidence, and well-being in the process of becoming a teacher and take ownership in shaping their experience.

C.I.T.A.

"Co-Teaching in and through the Arts" (C.I.T.A.) is the core program of the Menomonie School District, focused primarily on:

ARTS INTEGRATION skill building
for early career teachers

,C.I.T.A. aims to inspire elementary teachers of the Menomonie School District to explore their instructional practices in new ways, using the arts to engage students in learning.  The teacher does this in collaboration (co-teaching) with a teaching artist.  Working with the artist independently in their classroom or in a group workshop, the teacher learns a basic skill set in an art area and is shown how to integrate the arts into their curriculum on their own.  By teaching in and through the arts, the teacher will enhance their abilities to reach and teach students; build confidence in their teaching; and experience greater joy in teaching.

P.A.I.N.T.

Program for Arts Integration for New Teachers (P.A.I.N.T.) is the core program of UW-Stout, focused primarily on:

HANDS-ON TEACHING practice
for pre-service teachers

P.A.I.N.T. connects the university to school and community organizations to provide authentic teaching practicums around an exploration of arts learning. Education students at UW-Stout earn paid internships to teach arts-based classes in the local community and on campus, provided with mentoring and support. PAINT interns grow their teaching capacity and confidence through reflective practice.

 

MINDFULNESS

… and Breathe

While not a program in and of itself, mindfulness is an important component of A.I.M. focused primarily on:

supporting WELL-BEING
for ALL EDUCATORS

The demands of today's classrooms continue to increase, as teachers are faced with more expectations and fewer resources. While mindfulness doesn’t reduce the demands of teaching, it provides tools to manage stress and see clearly in the present moment to support problem solving and emotion regulation.  Mindfulness can help teachers weather the joys and challenges of teaching, reducing burnout and emotional exhaustion.