Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Art Across the Curriculum

Using art in the classroom can help your students in many different ways. It is great for kinesthetic learners who like to use their hands and create things in class and is also perfect for reaching visual learners that like to see concepts. Art also improves critical thinking skills and an outlet for anything emotional going on in their lives. If you have students from many different cultures or backgrounds in your class, art is something that all cultures in the world have in common and a work of art transcends language and cultural barriers and is something everyone can understand. Art also promotes skills employers are looking for in the workplace such as self-direction and creativity. Here are some suggestions on different ways to use art in your classroom.

Language Arts

  • Book Making – Making a book is an art form. Have students view an unusual book (such as Griffin and Sabine) and create their own artistic book.
  • Journaling – Have students view a painting and journal about what is happening in the painting, what is took place before the painting was created, or from the point of view of someone in the painting.
  • Character Development – Have students create a new character to add into a book they are reading or have students draw a character from the book. Compare their ideas.
  • Create a setting – Create a setting by choosing a work of art that shows a certain time period. Have students write a story that goes with that image/time/place.
  • Metaphors – Create both written and visually drawn metaphors.


  • Tangrams – Use tangram shapes to create objects. Online there are instructions to make your own tangram sets easily.
  • Perspective drawing – Students will learn how to project a figure onto a 2-D plane while drawing some realistic objects. I have a free PowerPoint on this you can use.
  • Polyhedra – Create cool 3-D polyhedra from ordinary 2-D shapes.
  • Braids & Knots – Check out knotplot.com for a visual exploration of mathematical knots.
  • Good math art resource: http://www.bestonlinecollege.org/best-math-art/


Social Studies

  • Class or Small Group Mural – Particularly in Mexico many artists created mural about Mexico’s history. Students could view the mural and discuss how it relates to Mexico’s history and create a mural either as a class or in a small group on a large paper that describes the history of a selected time period.
  • Time Period Review – Show students a variety of works of art from time periods they have studied. Can they tell which art is from what time?
  • Values – View artwork from different time periods to tell what is valued during each time period. What does the art say about each time period?
  • Cultural Summary – Almost every culture has artwork that is unique to it. After studying a culture creating a work of art related to that is a great end to a unit!
If you enjoyed this article on ways to integrate art into your classroom, check out the related post here.


  1. I really enjoyed this blog post. Thanks for sharing. You really put a lot of attention into your posts and they are so informational. I find a great deal of value in what you post. Thanks again. Keep up the amazing work!!!
    God Bless,
    Kkimmie <3

    1. Thank you for such kind words! It is so nice to hear you find useful information in our blog posts. I'm so glad you enjoy them. Thank you for letting us know and for the encouragement to keep it up!


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