In a 21st-century teaching world that is in a constant state of change, we find ourselves as educators trying to find value in everything we do. Maximizing curriculum integration is key in an environment with a packed curriculum and limited time for teachers to extend their learning.An area that deserves particular attention is the Arts, incorporating everything from music, drama, visual art, dance and more. STEM & STEAM are popular terms being thrown around at the moment that helps teachers understand the importance of curriculum integration. It has been interesting following the STEM/STEAM discussions online over the past year and the feelings that people have towards this. I have noticed a trend towards people using these words without following through and demonstrating actual integration that supports student learning. My biggest fear is that buzz words take over and as a result, true learning misses out. That is what we are trying to avoid at my school as we push towards a STEAM orientated approach to learning.
As a former music teacher, I look at this in a different view. I always tried to bring in other areas of education into my classroom. Music made this easy, since it involves math, science, social studies, and English. Cross-displinary education seems to become more and more rare, where it’s more common at the elementary levels and progressively becomes less and less as the grade levels increase.