Black Artists in the Jazz Age: A Collection of Dance-Integrated Lesson Plans


  • Morgan Boulden, Elementary Teacher Education, University of Delaware

Faculty Mentor(s)

  • Monica Frichtel, Department of Theater and Dance, University of Delaware


Arts integration is a teaching practice where content standards are both taught and assessed through the arts. Research, such as studies done by the Arts Education Partnership exploring the links between arts integration and academic development, suggests that arts integration practices support student learning. With the development of arts integration through the Changing Education Through the Arts (CETA) program, educators have worked with others in their field and art coaches to create lessons and practices beneficial to students’ learning and growth. This approach to teaching and learning has a number of benefits including longer retention of concepts, deeper understanding of content, greater motivation and engagement, and the development of social and emotional learning skills. Following my research on the development and importance of arts integration, examining studies and first hand experiences from educators, this project resulted in a collection of lesson plans that cover information and topics inspired from performance projects presented through the University of Delaware. The overlapping theme between the projects that inspired this collection of lessons is Black artists in the Jazz Age. To provide a quick look into the collection, one of the lesson plans created connects writing literacy standards from Common Core State Standards to creation in dance standards from the National Core Arts Standards. In this lesson, students use improvisational movement to finish telling a story provided by the teacher. After the lesson plans were complete, they were taught to two age groups at a local dance studio named Delaware Dance Company. Seeing the lesson plans in the classroom allowed for me to reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of the lessons and make improvements as needed.