Arts-Based Language Learning in Early Elementary Public Education in the United States: The Art of Intrigue, a Discussion

By J. Jackson.

Published by The International Journal of Arts Education

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published Online: August 21, 2015 $US5.00

My aim is to advance language learning among urban low-income public school early learners in the United States through arts-based literacy instruction. My analysis is founded on the understanding that the learning process is strongly linked to learning conditions, and that wherever these conditions are less supportive of learning, arts-based curriculum delivery can serve a compensatory role in reading skill development and language acquisition. Research from many fields suggests a relationship between learning skills and academic development, and in particular, link early attachment conditions with later achievement. Indeed, it appears to be the case that parental social capital significantly mediates early cognitive development. Sociological studies relate achievement differences to the concept of social capital; childhood literacy research confirms the effects of neighborhood and family environment on academic performance; and child development literature demonstrates the functional impact of the arts on imagination, play, cognition, and individual and social growth. I focus on early language acquisition and development because of its importance to all later academic achievement, and I treat puppets and puppetry as an example of arts-based curriculum delivery.

Keywords: Arts Education, Puppetry, Intrigue, Cognition, Socioeconomic, Socio-emotional, Compensatory Education

The International Journal of Arts Education, Volume 10, Issue 3, September, 2015, pp.1-24. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published Online: August 21, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 663.582KB)).

J. Jackson

Doctoral Student, Educational Policy, Michigan State University, Lansing, MI, USA