The mission of Juilliard School in New York City is to provide the highest caliber of artistic education for gifted musicians, dancers, and actors to thereafter achieve their fullest potential. Though not world-renowned, Park View Elementary is equally committed to the success of students. Following the Nebo School District School Board’s goal of “training and empowering faculty and staff to provide integrated and core specific fine arts instruction for every child every day,” Park View is well on their way.
Walking through classrooms at the school, you will see various integrations of the fine arts, including visual art, music, drama, dance and creative movement. Visual arts have always been a focus of the school. With the beautiful student gallery showcasing individual work, to the impressive, diverse hall displays, to the pieces of art produced during their specialty art classes, Park View stands apart.
Principal Kristie Reynolds has taken this a step farther to further promote the Board’s goals. “I have always had a passion for the fine arts. Each month I want to encourage students to create an art piece that reflects concepts learned during the month,” Reynolds said. “The classes can vote which is their favorite piece and display it in our Student Gallery. In this way, students can take ownership of the gallery and more importantly in the beauty of our school. This month’s theme is ‘What I Love to Learn in Class.’”
Fine arts are permeating the air at the school. Kindergarten teachers often use puppetry, songs, and body movement to teach letters and sounds. First through third grades have explored creative movement in language arts and math studies: varying their height to depict letters, using movement to represent geometric shapes and time, and using the body as a take-wherever-you-go number line. Due to the fine arts training, sixth grade has become novice thespians, creating and performing reader’s theaters and short plays.
All grades have incorporated music as a powerful tool for learning. Students have memorized songs about vowels, opposites, math facts & operations, and science concepts like the water cycle. Ms. Regan Lundell, first grade teacher reported, “Integrating fine arts into the curriculum allows you to reach more students and teach to a greater variety of learning styles. Music, movement and creative expression are wonderful tools to enhance, instruct and solidify important concepts." Fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Diane Blackham agrees, "In my classroom singing songs with my students has helped re-enforce curriculum. My students enjoy learning the songs, and have told me a particular song is just what they needed to help them remember what they have learned, such as the steps to a division problem. I believe the songs my students have learned this year have been essential to their success!"