Klea Scharberg

From the Master Class to the Classroom, At Home and After School

Whole child partner the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts revealed its redesigned ARTSEDGE website this past weekend—a resource for arts and arts-integrated educational content and a go-to site for educators around the country looking for lesson plans, multimedia-enhanced instruction, and performance footage.

But the site is not just for teachers. The new ARTSEDGE has a fresh look and portals for educators, families, and students—and a way to personalize experiences with myARTSEDGE, a new feature that allows users to save, organize, and share their favorite site resources. "Our mission was originally focused on providing research and resources for teachers, but research now shows the need to provide resources for students themselves," says Darrell M. Ayers, vice president for education at the Kennedy Center. "Resources used to be embedded in lesson plans for teachers, but the new site now highlights resources in a more easily navigable way for students to access."

Arts play an essential role in providing each student with a well-rounded education that meets the needs of the whole child. Reading Shakespeare aloud in English class reinforces reading, inflection, and diction; learning music teaches math concepts like counting, division, and fractions; and dance study imparts a knowledge of kinesiology and reinforces healthy, active activities. "Arts as a discipline is important, but learning through the arts enhances curricula and educational experiences," said Ayers.

They Might Be Giants at the Kennedy Center

Kicking off the redesign, the Kennedy Center hosted a free, all-ages concert with Grammy winners They Might Be Giants. Watch the archived concert and enjoy songs about the letters of the alphabet and geography ("Alphabet of Nations"), counting ("Nonagon"), science and animals ("I Am a Paleontologist"), history ("James K. Polk"), and other fan favorites.

Check out the new ARTSEDGE site, and watch a video, listen to a podcast, and think about how you can integrate the arts into your classroom and with your family.

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