Social Studies and the Arts

I believe that drama would be the most useful art form to help me understand different historical contexts because I personally feel the most engaged when I am able to take on the thoughts and feelings of another person through acting. Drama would help me better understand historical people, places, and events because I would be able to put myself in a specific situation as a specific character. This would allow me to understand that person’s experience and how it relates to current issues in our society. 

As a future educator, I plan to use all of the art forms Goldberg suggests, depending on which area of study we are focusing. I believe that I will use visual arts and drama most often because they are two simple, engaging mediums of art through which students can better learn and understand historical concepts. Drama would be most useful in helping students learn about historical events and the important characters that played a role in those events. They would not only enjoy having the opportunity to “become” a character, but they would also be able to connect with the material in a more meaningful and positive way. Visual arts, on the other hand, would be helpful for students to learn about the customs of different cultures, as well as geographical concepts. Students could learn more about the lifestyles, customs, and beliefs of people throughout history, for example, by analyzing historical photos, paintings, and other works of art.

It is important to integrate art into social studies curriculum because it allows students to learn in an interactive way. Being able to interact with historical content through art, rather than reading textbooks and memorizing facts, is essential for students to relate to the experiences of people throughout history. In turn, this could motivate students to create positive change in order to better our society.

3 thoughts on “Social Studies and the Arts

  • February 26, 2018 at 5:09 pm
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    Have you thought about incorporating media arts into a history curriculum? I think it would be eye opening and fun for students to create an idea for a video game or animation based on a particular time period or event, or maybe use the digital fabricators or a 3-D printer (if you can get access) to create mock artifacts from that time period. I know that I personally only have limited ability with media arts, but I am sure I will have some students who are “fluent” in creating in this way, so I think it would be a real learning opportunity to see what we can do as a class, or in groups and see what we can create.

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  • February 27, 2018 at 4:24 am
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    I agree with you in that I would prefer to use drama and visual arts the most often but I plan on using all the mediums Dr. Goldberg discusses in this chapter. I really like how you mentioned that being able to interact with historical content through art rather than through textbooks is so much more essential and it will definitely help students learn better. I feel like most people say they don’t like history at all and I believe if they had learned it differently through these art mediums, then maybe they would have a more positive outlook towards it.

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  • February 27, 2018 at 11:08 pm
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    I agree that drama is a great way to learn through history. I remember in 4th grade my teacher gave us name of people who came to JamesTown and we had to become those people. We were given our name, job, and what we could provide to the new colony. We had a fun time doing this and later had to write a diary as the character. I still remember it to this day.

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