Nations in Neighborhoods: Integrating Social Studies, Community Resources, and the Arts
New York City’s Community School Districts 28 on behalf of Districts 25, 28 & 30 in Queens County, and in collaboration with the cultural center, City Lore, have designed Nations in Neighborhoods, a program for integrating social studies, community resources, and the arts.
The goals of Nations in Neighborhoods are:
- Create a replicable model for integrating social studies, community resources, and the arts;
- Build teachers’ capacity to use community resources and culturally responsive instruction in their classrooms;
- Help teachers address the challenges and promises of a highly diverse and shifting immigrant student population through cultural arts integration;
- Refine, expand, document and implement successful models in folk arts and cultural resources designed to strengthen learning in and through the arts in grades 3-8.
- Improve students’ literacy and social studies knowledge and skills, while strengthening their ability to in create, perform, and respond to the arts, in measurable ways.
- Document and evaluate student progress towards meeting State and National Art Standards I, II, III and IV.
- Disseminate and replicate, locally and nationally, successful models for cultural arts and social studies integration, through a project website, publications, and presentations at regional and national arts and social studies education conferences.
- Develop a repository of cultural arts-integrated units and resources related to three regions of the world — Latin America, Africa, and Asia — and their contribution to American history and culture;
- Provide teachers with tools and strategies for documenting and assessing student learning in and through the arts;
- Encourage parent and community engagement in the life of the schools through community field trips, and guest artist and community member visits in the classroom;
- Execute a rigorous quasi-experimental evaluation that gauges the effectiveness of the arts intervention, and can be used as a model for evaluating cultural arts in-school initiatives in elementary and middle schools;