Connected Arts at JCDS

Shaw Lane, Art Specialist, and Virginia Dickert, Music Specialist

Connecting the arts with other academic disciplines helps to unleash young minds. Arts integration truly deepens learning experiences in the core academic subjects.
The “Ten Lessons the Arts Teach, by Elliott Eisner, perfectly illustrates just how this happens. According to Mr. Eisner, “The arts traffic in subtlety.” These subtle connections enable children to think through processes and to experience the range and capacity of what they are feeling. And when we take the time in art and music to reconnect to the core academics, their learning is enhanced and the relativity becomes obvious. As a result, students engage on a different level and the sparks of energy ignite. This is the place where the subconscious becomes conscious and the “eureka” moments begin.
Another reason for integrating arts with core academics is that students realize that the faculty members are very much a team, working and meeting together to plan and collaborate.
The arts also connect to social behavior, which reflect many of our character virtues such as self-control, empathy, respect, and compassion. Service learning projects in the arts teach children about the importance of reaching out to those who may be seriously ill, the elderly, or those who have much less.
The more teachers connect and collaborate, the more they benefit the students who they teach.
Examples of Visual Arts Integration at Jacksonville Country Day:

1st Grade:
  • Cats in Hats – Celebration of Dr. Seuss’s birthday 
  • Polar Bear Family Drawing – Global studies polar region unit
  • Rainforest animal painting – Global studies rainforest unit
2nd Grade:
  • Mondrian paper design – Singapore Math
  • Aboriginal bark banners – Global studies Australia unit
  • Torn paper butterflies – Butterfly life cycle unit
  • Oil pastel trees – Life cycle science unit
  • Mod pudge bugs – Life cycle science unit 
3rd Grade:
  • Clay kimono figures – Global studies Asian unit
  • Clay Asian elephants – Asian unit
  • Chinese dragons – Asian unit
  • Can robots – Simple machines science unit
  • Van Gogh cityscapes – Jacksonville unit
  • Habitat dioramas – Science unit  
4th Grade:
  • Panamanian paper molas - Global studies Latin America unit/math
  • Printed Mayan masks -  Latin America unit
  • Mexican foil repousse’ animals - Latin America unit
  • Native Florida Indian drawing – Florida unit
  • Biographical drawing – Collaboration with language arts
  • "Save the Manatee" collages – Science/service learning collaboration 
5th Grade:
  • Clay turtles – Sea turtle science unit
  • Illustration for Esperanza Rising – Spanish
  • Sculpture creations for A Night at the Met - Collaboration with language arts
  • Diorama based on From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler – Collaboration with language arts
6th Grade:
  • Papier mache African masks – Global studies Africa unit
  • Printed kente cloths - Africa unit
  • Canopic jars – Global studies Egyptian unit
  • Egyptian clay tiles - Egyptian unit
  • Egyptian royalty portraits - Egyptian unit
  • Printed Greek pottery designs – Global studies Greece unit
  • Clay pies – Math (concept of pi)
  • Henna hands – Global studies India unit
  • Coral reef watercolor – Marine ecology study in science lab
Located In Jacksonville, FL, Jacksonville Country Day School is a private school for Pre-K 3 through 6th grade. JCDS prepares students for a healthy and productive lifetime of intellectual exploration, character development, and social responsibility.