Next-Level Drama: Advanced Arts Integration in the Standard Classroom
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Arts integration is a popular aspect of cross-curricular education, but often is misused in the traditional core-curriculum classroom. The typical attempt at ‘arts integration’ in the classroom, particularly with theatre and drama, does not attempt to include theatre TEKS or state standards. Instead, in these scenarios, a shallow attempt at the integration is incorporated, where students reenact scenes from history or physically embody scientific concepts without regard to actually learning theatre. This paper strives to serve as a critique of this method and offer a more in-depth version of arts integration. The following thesis provides a detailed framework for any potential teacher who hopes to bring drama into the classroom in a successful way, incorporating the state standards to the subject. A unit plan and example units are also included, allowing for any instructor to get a full taste of what a cross curricular lesson with drama can look like. A glossary of a few simple theatrical terms is included at the end, indicating important theatrical concepts used in the example unit and can be used in the future for both long-term units and five minute activities. One of the example lesson plans was implemented in a summer camp setting, with success. With the cooperation of administration and fellow teachers, the arts can be integrated into a classroom in order to enhance learning and increase student engagement.