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What is Arts Integration? What is a Teaching Artist?

I am often asked, What is a teaching artist? What does a teaching artist do? Well that question can have many different answers depending on the day and depending on which teaching artist you ask. So today, I will say that a teaching artist is a creative or an artist that uses their art form to teach other subjects. This is arts integration. I am a theater artist, so I primarily use theater based strategies to teach or enhance Reading Comprehension, Social Emotional Learning, STEM, Team Building and anything else that you can think of. In addition to theater strategies, I often integrate music and movement into my learning experiences.

I do a large part of my work with educators and children in schools and early learning centers. However, teaching artists are not limited to working with children and schools. My work includes classes for infants and toddlers and their caregivers, professional development workshops for educators and creative workshops for seniors. Teaching artists work in many different settings with many different populations including; hospitals, nursing homes, community centers, detention centers. Now many of us are working with participants virtually, from their homes. We will go wherever we are needed.


Kennedy Center's Arts Integration Definition

Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning through the Arts

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1 Comment

Jennifer Ridgway
Jennifer Ridgway
Sep 17, 2021

What an awesome piece, Khaleshia! Congrats. It's chock full of great content.

You made me laugh out loud when you said, "How much time do you have?" This is so true. The arts do so much. I always walk away from a conversation thinking, "Oh, I should have said..." It can be overwhelming to feel like you have to speak for and honor an entire field. And I truly believe, even with all the studies and research out there on the positive impact of the arts, that we barely have scratched the surface of understanding and recognizing all that the arts.

It's so important for each of us to step up. Together we will get to the bottom of i…

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