I hope your February has begun well. It has been busy for me - getting ready for my teaching this semester as well as working on a number of research projects. I have also been working hard to finish my next book. It is titled: Developing literacy and the arts in schools. I am so close to finishing it - just doing the final edits etc. I hope you will enjoy it. Basically the book explores the relationship between the arts and literacy in schools. This relationship is often reported as being dissonant so I investigate and share some ways in which we can improve the partnership by making it more harmonious. I have developed a model of arts-literacies that includes the notions of aesthetic-artistic thinking and reasoning, textual knowledge, subject-specific vocabulary, cohesive knowledge and knowledge and understanding of all of the modes of communication. I talk about how arts teachers skilfully support students from being novice artists to achieving mastery.
I strongly advocate for the inclusion of the arts in education as there are many benefits for students, particularly those from non-dominant communities. Unfortunately, I have seen too often the arts being marginalised in schools largely due to higher provision for literacy education. I argue they can co-exist positively and in fact need to in order for students to be literate in the 21st Century and beyond. The arts support creative and design thinking, aesthetic understanding as well as support students in working together productively.
I am excited about finishing the book for your reading pleasure ;)