6 Strategies For Implementing Art Integrated Learning

Last Updated on October 3, 2023 by Editorial Team

Art integration is a teaching approach that involves the use of various art forms to teach core subjects to students. Through this approach, students develop an understanding of vital concepts by engaging creatively with activities that seamlessly blend art with other subjects in the curriculum. This helps them meet learning objectives in both fields of study. 

In order to weave different art forms with topics in the core curriculum, for example, art and math, schools and teachers must have a strategic approach so that integrating art with traditional teaching approaches can reap fruitful results in education and help create well-rounded learners. This article discusses the strategies teachers can implement to support art-integrated learning (AIL) in schools and other educational environments.

Art-integrated learning – Why does it work for students?

When students are taught using traditional methods, one can see them sitting quietly on their chairs, taking in as much as possible while the teacher delivers the information. Because students’ attention spans are short, they tend to lose their grip on what is being taught. This results in poor comprehension and retention of information. 

But when teachers incorporate different art forms into the curriculum to help students learn, one can find them actively participating in the learning process because it sparks interest in their minds, which promotes learning. Art-integrated lesson plans allow students to learn through new learning modalities and make creative decisions.  

For example, when a teacher asks students to create animal crafts and use them for story-retelling activities, students enjoy the learning process. They create hand puppets for their stories, think of background music, and use other forms of creative expression. This way they tend to understand the concepts better, which results in quick comprehension and long-term retention of information. 


The fact that art-integrated learning is beneficial for students is also established through several research-based studies. One such study[1] demonstrating the effectiveness of art-integrated learning in developing a conceptual understanding of geography in elementary school students confirmed that integrating art in classroom teaching significantly develops students’ conceptual knowledge of the subject compared to traditional teaching methods. 

Another study[2] establishing the effect of art integration on the memory of students studying science content stated that art-integrated instruction was as effective or even better than conventional teaching approaches in creating long-term memory of science content in the minds of the students. 

These findings clearly emphasize the benefits of art-integrated learning. Therefore, school systems and teachers must create an effective learning environment and incorporate more art-integrated lesson plans because the benefits far outweigh the costs of implementation. 

Strategies to successfully implement art-integrated learning

1. Enhancing Educator Competence 

The first step to implementing art-integrated learning in schools is to ensure all members of the school understand the importance of art in education and consider it a useful pedagogical tool. Workshops and programs help train educators on how they can integrate arts and crafts with core subjects and create a successful plan to teach students through various art forms.

For instance, encouraging middle schoolers to make DIY algebra tiles to help them understand algebraic concepts. By improving the understanding and skills of teachers in this arena, schools can ascertain that they are equipped to combine art with learning to allow students to grasp academic content easily. 

2. Planning Art Integrated Learning Activities

Planning for art-integrated learning involves a thoughtful and systematic approach to incorporating arts-based learning into the school’s curriculum. Teachers can begin by identifying learning objectives and figuring out how students can achieve these objectives by integrating art with academic concepts. Secondly, they must select appropriate art forms that can align with the concept to be studied to facilitate the learning process. 

Next, they must determine how they can combine the art form with the topic to help students develop a thorough understanding of the subject matter. And finally, come up with well-designed activities that can keep the interest of students alive and encourage them to happily get involved in learning. 

3. Scheduling and Time Management

Teachers have a lot on their plates. Several tasks must be accomplished on a regular school day, making it difficult for teachers to take time out to conduct art-integrated activities that usually require more time than standard teaching methods. That is why scheduling and time management are vital in ensuring sufficient art-integrated learning opportunities are provided to students during regular school hours.

Besides using art in classroom learning, teachers can encourage art-integrated learning during assembly time, special events, celebrations, field trips, etc., when kids are excited and open to trying new things in a fun-filled environment. 

4. Identifying Valuable Resources

A good stack of resources is necessary to provide an enriched art-integrated learning experience. Teachers must regularly research to identify helpful resources for teaching subject matter through art. Resources should be readily available, reusable, and easy to use so students can handle them easily. Plus, material resources must be budget-friendly because they are needed in large quantities, so all students receive adequate art material for art-integrated activities. 

Teachers can also welcome local artisans and service providers to school to provide students with an up-close and personal experience. These opportunities are great for engaging students and supporting student learning. 

Space is another essential resource for teaching and learning. While teachers can conduct many art-integrated activities in the classroom, an occasional non-traditional learning space such as the school auditorium, gymnasium, or an outdoor field can encourage kids to explore their surroundings, experiment with their ideas, and express their thoughts easily and freely. 

5. Preparing classrooms for AIL

Classrooms are the place where most of the learning happens. In order to make the classroom space suitable for learning through art, teachers must ditch the traditional seating arrangement and create a more open and accessible space for teachers and students. In this place, teachers can move freely and interact with individuals or groups of students during an activity. A U-shaped seating arrangement is a good option for art-integrated learning. 

In addition, there must also be a dedicated space where students can deliver performances and presentations in front of teachers and peers. Another important aspect of preparing a classroom for AIL is setting up display areas where students can display their works of art for others to see and appreciate. 

6. Assessing outcomes of AIL

Assessing art-integrated learning should not follow the traditional approach. It must entail continuous and comprehensive assessment through which teachers can evaluate both subject matter accuracy and artistic expression. This can ensure that both the academic and creative components of the project are assessed fairly. Another approach can be through formative assessments to provide continuous feedback to students when they are involved in the activity. 

Teachers can also incorporate new ways of evaluation, such as class discussions, peer feedback, and self-reflection exercises, to help students understand where they stand in the learning curve and identify areas for improvement. It is, however, important to remember that assessing art-integrated learning is not just about measuring how much a student has learned. It is also about encouraging creativity, innovation, and self-expression while having a good time. 

In Conclusion

Art-integrated learning can significantly impact the academic and personal development of students. It is a powerful tool that educators can utilize to help students reach their full potential. By incorporating various art forms, such as music, drama, dance, and visual arts, into traditional academic subjects, teachers can create a more engaging and effective learning experience for students.

It will not only help in developing a deeper understanding of concepts but will also strengthen their critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Using the strategies mentioned above, teachers can integrate arts with all academic subjects and give students a positive learning experience. 


  1. Mohalik, Ramakanta & Basu, Mayurakshi. (2020). Effectiveness of Arts Integrated Learning (AIL) in Developing Conceptual Understanding in Geography at Elementary Level. SSRN Electronic Journal. 10.2139/ssrn.3674340. 
  2. Hardiman, M., JohnBull, R. M., Carran, D. T., & Shelton, A. L. (2019). The effects of arts-integrated instruction on memory for science content. Trends in Neuroscience and Education, 14, 25–32. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tine.2019.02.002

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