Lexington Performing Arts Department
National Core Arts Standards:
The arts, a basic form of human communication, provide an outlet for creativity and serve as a source of aesthetic satisfaction. Through the arts, people can explore, express and understand thoughts, emotions and feelings. They provide a means for the enrichment of life through self-expression and response to the expression of others. However one participates in the arts, they are a source of great enjoyment, contributing significantly to the quality of life. As one of the disciplines identified within the Massachusetts Common Core of Learning, the inclusion of the Fine and Performing Arts within the basic curriculum of every child is essential.
The arts stand alone not only for their intrinsic value, but as a way of perpetuating our heritage and culture. As children work in the arts, they also develop self-discipline, self-esteem, critical and creative thinking skills and motivation. The arts enhance the student’s ability to analyze emotional and intuitive responses, to solve problems, and to develop communication skills.
The basis of arts education is to provide experiences which will develop the ability of children to express themselves through the arts and perceive the arts at increasingly deeper levels of meaning. Education in the fine and performing arts must also provide for the development of literacy in using signs, symbols and terminology of the arts. This knowledge is required to describe, analyze and interpret the arts. Finally, learning in the arts should provide students with a knowledge of their cultural heritage as well as an awareness of the role and function of the arts within our society and other cultures of the world.
As one of the disciplines identified within the Massachusetts Common core of Learning, the inclusion of the Fine and Performing Arts within the basic curriculum of every child is essential. The Arts Curriculum Frameworks are organized around three core concepts:
- Creating and performing,
- Thinking and responding, and
- Connecting and contributing.
These Frameworks are consistent with the National Standards for Arts Education.
Students in the Lexington Public Schools experience the arts through a comprehensive, sequential, longitudinal curriculum taught by arts specialists. The core concepts of the curriculum include performance, creating and responding to arts, critical and reflective thinking and understanding the historical and cultural contexts of the arts. Students are also encouraged and nurtured to be creative while developing skills in observation, interpretation and evaluation. We also believe that if they are to participate in a truly diverse, global society, students must also understand their own historical and cultural heritage as well as those of others within their community.