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Integrated Arts In Education Week 11 – 20/11/18 December 19, 2018

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Today we performed a dance routine we which we have been working towards over the last few weeks.  We performed as a class and included small group dances throughout the main performance, which worked very well.  There were mixed levels of interest amongst the cohort which is to be expected, however everyone who was there on the day really enjoyed it.

After the performance we spoke of evaluation, appreciation, reflection and improvement regarding our performance.  We used a form of feed back called ‘three starts and a wish’.  This gave oppertunity for three forms of praise and one area for improvement.  I feel this method would be successful with children as it helps them to gain a sense of achievement and will build on their levels of resilience, as they will learn how to process critical feed back.

When I received my feedback it made me proud of what I had been part of and it also made me determined to try again when I saw the areas noted for improvement. Hallam (2010), found that activities such as this would see improvements in social skill and collaborative work as the creativity process sees emotions released, life long learning through memorable lessons, self esteem building and confidence gained.

Education Scotland (2013), suggest that there are four key skills that assist when evaluating, appreciating, reflecting and improving.  Skills here would be:

  • Constructively inquisitive – curious and researching.
  • Open minded – divergent thinking and being flexible.
  • Harness imagination – inventing and generating ideas.
  • Identify and solve problems – Evaluating impact and demonstrate resilience.

Later today in music we had the opportunity to play the Ukulele, this was once again unfamiliar territory for me however I was eager to learn and our class lecturer took us through step by step which was highly beneficial to me.  During this lesson I had to learn many new skills such as tuning the instrument and where to place/move my finger tips to play/change cords.

I did lose my way many times during this lesson as did others but we laughed and made light of it, forever trying to keep up with the more experienced musicians in the class.  We helped each other, sharing tips and ideas on ways to remember chords and we took part in the class song at the end.  Skills and attributes such as there are like those found in a ‘2022 future work skills Outlook’.  

As a future educator to young children and generations to come, it is important that I experience these skills for myself and also that I know and understand how others can experiences and use these skills also (Education Scotland, 2013).

In conclusion, the key skills from Education Scotland were used throughout my learning today and it stands to say that the creativity process wither it be dance or music will see people give their attention, problematic thinking, determination as this will pay them back in forms of positive emotions, memory and life long learning.



Education Scotland, (2013) Creativity across learning 3-18. [Online] Available: https://education.gov.scot/improvement/Documents/cre39-impact-report.pdf. [Accessed: 05 December 2018].

Hallam, S. (2010) International Journal of Music Education. [Online] Available: http://moodle1819.uws.ac.uk/pluginfile.php/45685/mod_resource/content/2/International%20Journal%20of%20Music%20Education-2010-Hallam-269-89.pdf. [Accessed: 05 December 2018].

Humantific, (2018) 2022 Future Work Skills Outlook. [Online] Available: http://www.humantific.com/2022-future-work-skills-outlook/. [Accessed: 05 December 2018].


Integrated Arts in Education Week 10 – 13/11/18 December 19, 2018

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Dance was the expressive art that we looked at today and as I am not a dancer, I was interested to learn how I could teach a dance session to a class of young learners.  A good thing for me to remember is, dance is something that can be done alone or with others and what you create is your own creation that know one can change however you should be in practice of reflecting on your work and that of others in order to make improvements (Cone, 2009).

In class today our lecturer spoke of 10 basic dance skills, with a combination of such skills paired with music and props, this makes a well rounded expressive art performance.  I feel that this would be achievable for me in the future and I look forward to the oppertunity should it arise.

10 Basic Dance Skills

  1. Balanance
  2. Gesture
  3. Hop
  4. Jump
  5. Kick
  6. Reach
  7. Roll
  8. Slide
  9. Turn
  10. Twist

I do understand that this will not be all that I need to know, therefore I aim to intend CPD’s ignorer for me to expand my skills and knowledge around this curriculum area.  Why do I want to do this?  Dance is in the curriculum and I understand why, when a child has the oppertunity to be creative or express themselves than education should allow this.  Experiences in expressive art such dance will see pupils and teachers increase their confidence, build up self esteem and staying active for good health and wellbeing (Care Inspectorate, 2018).

Understandbly dance is not for everyone however I am confident that I could involve a whole class in a school performance as I would need an entire cast and crew covering cross curricular areas such as:

Science: Stage lighting, Electricity Circuit Boards.

Technology: Performance Recording, Setting up microphones.

Engineering: Stage assembly, Stage Design.

Art: Stage Appearance, Stage Props, Costumes.

Music: Dance Tracks, Singing, Sound Effects.

I believe with dance if you can learn 10 basic dance skills and attend regular CPD’s, reflect on your practice and the practice of other then there is no reason that dance should not be included in a child’s education. As we know dance includes health and well being indicators such as SHANARRI (Care Inspectorate, 2018).

Safe – The teacher will plan and ensure safety at all times.

Healthy – Pupils will do appropriate warm up and stretches.

Achieving – Pupils will be praised for their work.

Nurtured – No one will do anything they do not wish to do.

Active – Pupils will be active during dance performances.

Respected – Allow for creativity and believe in pupil validality.

Responsible – Pupils be responsible for something during and up to the performance.

Included – All pupils will have a part to play i the production.

Most importantly the class can imagine through creativity, pretend to be someone else if they wish to and also to remove themselves from any worries by immersing themselves in expressive arts.


Care Inspectorate, (2018) The Hub. [Online] Available: https://hub.careinspectorate.com/media/603624/our-creative-journey-aug-17-master-combined.pdf. [Accessed: 05 December 2018].

Theresa Purcell Cone, (2009) Following Their Lead: Supporting Children’s Ideas for Creating Dances, Journal of Dance Education. [Online] Available: http://moodle1819.uws.ac.uk/pluginfile.php/45655/mod_resource/content/1/Purcell%20Cone%20%282011%29.pdf. [Accessed: 05 December 2018].


Integrated Arts in Education Week 9 – 6/11/18 December 19, 2018

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This week as a class we watched the Tim Ingold talk that Tim Ingold himself gave to staff and students at UWS several years ago.  I found what Tim spoke of very interested and definitely food for thought.

The first area that has made me think is two ways education can be seen as, here Tim talks about teaching our children what they need to know as we ourselves learned and generations before us in comparrison to allowing pupil and teacher to venture out and find what there is to discover. Ideas such as these are what we discuss in our workshops and by slightly removing formal instructions you are lowering the chance of similar work/outcomes created by a class of young learners as creativity has been allowed.

Care Inspectorate (2018), found that children who where allowed to engage with creativity with little formal instruction were more likely to be strong, confident individuals. This is because the chid has had opportunity to think for themselves, overcome problems and receive praise on work they know they carried out with no formal instruction

Tim Ingold goes on to discus handwriting which he feels is at risk and soon to be forgotten about during in an ever changing digital age.  I can particularly relate to the part he speaks about the of individuality in handwriting as I have noticed this while out on school placement.  I really enjoy reading hand written work from my class as they all write in their own individual way which is something that no one can take away from you, unless you are a keyboard and this is where the children are at risk of loosing their handwriting.

As my class are only in primary 5 I feel that it is highly likely that when they are young adults entering the working world that they will very rarely write as all their work will be on a computer.  Personally I feel pressure to use a keyboard most days however I fight the urge and I take lecture notes with pen and paper, this helps me to think for myself in regards to spelling and punctuation as the keyboard will do this for me otherwise and I will eventually loose these skills for myself.

Below are some on my handwritten notes from lectures as you can see they are most defiantly not typed on a keyboard and I think that it is highly unlikely that my keyboard and I could do this as well as I can myself.

Tim Ingold suggests looking at your writing and the shapes that are made, enlarging your handwriting to see shapes and fine detail, this is something that is it risk in education and as a student teacher I will ensure that any class I teach, will always have oppertunity to write by hand.




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Integrated Arts in Education Week 8 – 30/10/18 November 5, 2018

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This week in class we delved a little deeper into our understanding of STEAM, the music class and drama class today demonstrated STEAM in action.

Previous to starting this module I thought anyone that said STEAM was mispronouncing STEM, which was a term I was more familiar with.  Looking back now it makes sense why my school placement last year always said STEAM and not STEM.  Who was I to correct them and I am very thankful that I didn’t as I know and understand what STEAM is and why they said it.

In music today I was in the mac lab, here we had the oppertunity to use the apple application ‘Garage Band’, this gave me the oppertunity to make music, I do not know how to play any musical instruments so by using this application I was able to make a potential backing track to a song.

Today I was working alone however the application shows many ways in which collaborative and autonomous creations can be made. Gaskins, 2016 states that ‘technical skills are gained through casual use of technologies and through networks of informal apprenticeships where peers demonstrate their techniques to each other’.

What I have taken from this is that while it is good to work alone and find your creative flow, collaborating with peers for support, mentoring, ideas and development can also bring together new life to a project.

By integrating this type of technology with art, it allowed me to experience the joy and satisfaction that a musician may experience when writing music and playing an instrument or two thus giving me confidence, self esteem and a sense of achievement (Marshall, 2014).

The drama class also used technology, this time in the form of imagery and sounds.  The theme chosen was a haunted house therefor our class lecturer played spooky music to play with out emotions and senses, there was also a spooky haunted house image on the smart board for us to reference to should we need it for inspiration.

Adding to the effects the lights were turned off and I really got a feel for the spooky setting needed for our short performance and all without being live on stage in an audience packed theatre.

I found the information posted below to be very interesting and proves to me while I read about STEAM that integrating arts in education is something that must happen. As I find myself out on placement and seeing STEM everywhere, I will do my up most to discuss STEAM wherever I go.

What Do Students Think of STEAM Lab?

Of the students surveyed about their STEAM lab activities:

(Gaskins, 2016)

As I find myself out on placement and seeing STEM everywhere, I will do my up most to discuss STEAM wherever I go ‘Art-centred learning puts connection-making and flexibility of thought and action front and centre, providing multiple creative ways to build complex and flexible understandings.’ (Marshall, 2014).


Education Scotland. (2004) Curriculum for Excellence; Experiences and Outcomes. [Online] Available: https://education.gov.scot/scottish-education-system/policy-for-scottish-education/policy-drivers [Accessed: 20 October 2018].

Gaskins, N. (2016) The New Face of STEAM. [Online] Available: https://www.edutopia.org/blog/the-new-face-of-steam-nettrice-gaskins [Accessed: 5 November 2018].

Marshall, J. (2014) Transforming education through art-centred integrated learning. [Online] Available: http://moodle1819.uws.ac.uk/pluginfile.php/45649/mod_resource/content/1/Transforming%20education%20through%20art-centred%20integrated%20learning.pdf [Accessed: 5 November 2018].

Pixabay, (N.D) [Online] Available: https://pixabay.com/en/villa-house-gloomy-dark-old-villa-3237114/ [Accessed: 05 November 2018].

Youtube, (2018) Spooky Music – Shadow Acrobats. [Online] Available https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfzHJ6ofNLY  [Accessed: 5 November 2018].



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Integrated Arts in Education Week 6 – 16/10/18 October 30, 2018

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Being creative across the curriculum was our focus this morning, we were discussing various documents that provide a back up, reassurance and that it is ok to be creative. In the afternoon we had our first drama class and later we created prints in the art studio, with objects other than paint brushes.

I feel confident on knowing that the HMIe approve and encourage creativity in schools. Previous to knowing this, I can see how I may have been nervous in regards to putting my ideas forward in an educational environment that may well shy away from creativity in the arts.

With the prospect of performing in drama today I can empathise with others and young children that also might feel this way.  An interested thing the my lecturer said ‘that its ok just to be there and take part, moving and talking is not compulsory.  This advice will help me in the future when dealing with pupils in class who are simply too shy or nervous to play the part in an acting roll.

‘collaboration is not necessarily an essential part of the creative process, and there are many examples throughout history, particularly in the arts, of creativity as a successful and individual pursuit.’ (Education Scotland, 2013, p.5).

When we were printing in class today, the thought of using my hands in the ink was slightly off putting as I imagine the cleaning up process. However, once I got started I was caught up in the creativity of it all that I forgot about the ink all over my hands.

Looking back at this activity I know children would really enjoy it.  Children love to experiment with materials and get their hands all dirty, by allowing children to touch the ink creates a sensory activity and takes away any barrier such as anxiety that a paint brush may cause.  The children are now closer to the materials and those who think that they can’t, can now see that they can.

Moving forward I feeling that using anything other than a paintbrush will create a mess and result in everything being everywhere, this is my own anxiety. My aim to overcome this is to get involved in the clean up as much as possible when I am in class and out on school placement.  When we were working with the lego in ink during class, I couldn’t help think of the time needed to clean and wash everything.


Education Scotland. (2013) Creativity across learning 3-18. [Online] Available: https://education.gov.scot/improvement/Documents/cre39-impact-report.pdf [Accessed: 28 October 2018].




Integrated Arts in Education Week 7 – 23/10/18 October 30, 2018

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This week in integrated arts I have experienced first hand that the arts can be for everyone. No matter what level of ability you have, there are many ways in which everyone can join in and participate.

Today we covered music and drama, we looked at various ways in which the arts can be approached.

Firstly we were introduced to ‘Figurenotes’ this concept was devised in Finland by a music teacher and a music therapist, Kaarlo Uusitalo and Markku Kaikkonen. The idea of playing what you see will conquer any barrier that you may face when reading notational or conventional pieces of music, initially designed for those with learning disabilities, figure notes can be used by anyone who wants to learn to play an instrument (Figurenotes, N.D).


Secondly in drama, we looked at five conventions;

All of the above conventions give you the opportunity to take part in drama, to a level that is to be desired. Some children are happy to play solo parts however, in some cases group participation is a better option as this will included children who face fear of performing solo.

While studying the arts today it has given me a real sense of empathy toward children and young people who are learning a new skill or who simply can not grasp the learning and fear getting left behind.

For example, in music today I was nervous about playing the glockenspiel to the ‘Figurenotes’ sheet of music. It looked complicated at first however, once I tried it a few times I really got the hang of it and I really enjoyed it. I was so pleased with myself , I started to think of my potential in the future as I’d made progress so quickly.

That didn’t last long though as we moved onto conventional sheet music for rhythm patterns and I was completely lost. I felt useless and demotivated, as I couldn’t keep up, this helps me understand how a child may feel in class.

Experiences like these make us curious therefore we develop, we begin to use our inatiatives, not only in the arts but in our day to day lives. This type of mind set with children can help them to develop multiple view points, they are excellent at problem solving because they ask good questions, thus building resilience (Education Scotland, 2013).

It is important in the arts for lessons plans to be flexible and adaptable, this eliminates any possibilities of barriers or anxieties occurring in the class.

As a future teacher I must understand that flexibility and adaptability encourages opportunity for creativity and self-esteem, which is what I experienced while playing ‘figurenotes’ music on the glockenspiel.

‘As well as fulfilling the very human need to explore and make new, creativity skills can support increased empowerment, resilience, self-discipline and increased involvement in society. In other words, being creative can have an impact on individual self-esteem, wellbeing and a sense of control.’ (Education Scotland, 2013, p.7)



Drake Music Scotland, (N.D) [Online] Available: https://drakemusicscotland.org [Accessed: 28 October 2018].

Education Scotland. (2013) Creativity across learning 3-18. [Online] Available: https://education.gov.scot/improvement/Documents/cre39-impact-report.pdf [Accessed: 28 October 2018].

Figurenotes, ND. [Online] Available: https://www.figurenotes.org [Accessed: 28 October 2018].




Integrated Arts in Education Week 3 – 25/09/18 October 22, 2018

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Today we began by looking at stimuli to engage with arts.  By using the world around you such as poems, pictures and music, all of which can help to inspire within the arts. Below is a story board inspired by music that was completed by myself and my peers.  When given the task of completing a story board I was struggling for ideas and inspiration however when the class lecturer started to play music to assist our creativeness myself and my group started drawing up ideas immediately.  This is something that I very much look forward to trying while I am out on school placement.

It fascinates me to learn that by playing a piece of music can spark such creativity when before there was little or none.  To me music is a way of relaxing, an escapism and as I have referred in previous blogs to the arts and that their are very similar in character that they create an escapism.  Csikszentmihaylyi (1997) refers to the term ‘in flow’, when you are doing something you enjoy you can block out any worries as you don’t have the concentration capacity to do both.

Below you can see an example of a professional approach of animation and music working side by side and rather well, if I may add.

Later in the day, we discussed looking and talking about art, this links well to our morning lecture as we were using pictures as stimuli. Below you can see an emotional learning card from the Institute of Visual Arts (INIVA) with an image on one side and questioning on the back. We used these in class where I felt quite embarrassed or shy about speaking out incase I was wrong.

These feelings and emotions can also be seen in school children as stated by (McAuliffe, 2007, p.28) ‘By KS3 children are at that difficult stage when someone will begin to feel self conscious about their own skill level,’.

I too discussed a painting of my own which I have included below in this blog.  I did not find this easy, perhaps because I knew that I was recording myself and that I feel that I lack sound knowledge and have little confidence both of which I aim to work on and improve by immersing myself in the arts, spending more time staring and thinking.

A CFE experience and outcome for this type of topic could be, inspired by a range of stimuli, I can express and communicate my ideas, thoughts and feelings through activities within art and design – EXA 0-05a / EXA 1-05a / EXA 2-05a.

In conclusion of todays learning it is clear that art is ambiguous and I must remember this, for myself and to allow others to be reminded.  If someone thinks that they can’t, that they might be wrong, they must be reassured and ensured that we can and we will all look at the arts differently which makes our work creative and unique.


Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1997) Creativity: flow and the psychology of discovery and invention. New York. harper perennial.

Education Scotland, (2004) Curriculum for Excellence; Experiences and Outcomes. [Online] Available: https://education.gov.scot/scottish-education-system/policy-for-scottish-education/policy-drivers [Accessed: 20 October 2018].

McAuliffe, D. (2007) Foundation and Primary Settings. In Teaching Art and Design 3-11. London: Continuum.

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