The Teaching Artist Summer Institute (TASI), August 10-12, 2011, is designed to train and prepare artists to use their art form to teach the tested curriculum in elementary and middle school classrooms. Most of the professional performing artists coming into the OMA program do not have any background in education. Our goal is to give them the tools and knowledge they need to be successful in the classroom. TASI is also used as a professional development tool for returning artists, enhancing and enriching their teaching artistry.
The schedule of TASI activities for returning artists includes gaining deeper insight into specific techniques of their art form, enriching their knowledge of teaching techniques and curricular areas, grade level presentations of lesson plans, and collaboration with other artists and classroom teachers on state standards and arts integration. All artists receive training on instructional strategies used in the classroom and lesson plan development strategies. Returning artists will have the opportunity to collaborate with other artists in their grade level, developing new lesson plans for the year. In addition, the returning artists get the chance to present to, teach, and mentor the new artists in the program.
The schedule of TASI activities for new artists includes an overview of the OMA program, instruction on the lesson plan template and state standards, techniques for creating an arts integrated lesson plan, and the opportunity to develop an arts integrated lesson plan that they present at the end of the week. All new artists receive guidance in classroom management strategies and instructional strategies by grade level. New artists have the opportunity to observe lesson plan presentations and work with returning artists in developing lesson plan ideas, and they are able to collaborate with classroom teachers on arts integration. Examples and explanations are given about the end of the year performance, as well as documentation of the process. In addition to arts integration and collaboration strategies, the artists are given curriculum outlines and instruction on how to plan out the year, making sure to include skills needed to make the end of the year performance successful.
In addition to Arts Integrations Academy held in the summer, Tucson Unified School District Fine and Performing Arts offers Professional Development for TUSD teachers throughout the school year. Workshops held in a variety of venues focus on the integration of the fine arts into the classroom curriculum.