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Arts Education Curriculum, History of

  • By: Elizabeth Vallance
  • In: Encyclopedia of Curriculum Studies
  • Edited by: Craig Kridel
  • Subject:Cultural Studies (general), Curriculum & Content (general), Curriculum Studies

The purposes and content of the school art curriculum in the United States have evolved in a kind of spiral since the institution of comprehensive public schooling in the late 19th century, varying the emphasis on art appreciation, art-making skills, and art as a basic humanities discipline according to the prevailing reform movements of the time. Though arts educators argue for the value of art in its own right, art has never been a central core subject in the school curriculum; its importance and its integration with other subjects ebb and flow, and today art is taught in ways that allow it to be integrated with other subjects. That states now have a minimum arts requirement for high-school graduation testifies to the tenacity of ...

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