VIEWS: 17 PAGES: 25 POSTED ON: 11/10/2011
Teaching Literacy and Life Skills through the Arts Social Skills Developing social skills through a literacy/art program Social Skills Adult students receive social skills training through: • Art courses It is about is an integral part of Students learn the importance Teamwork building self-confidence of completing self-awareness. and increasing as adult students the art studiostasks, showing up on time, and respecting the work collaboratively on various skills and projects. talents of their peers. Adult students often take on the Students take pride in their facility role of teachers as they voluntarily and voluntarily assist with chores. assist their classmates who are learning new skills. Classes most important to both Perhaps at VSA arts are organized to make and staff are the part of students students feel like long- a community. lasting friendships that are formed. Social Skills Adult students receive social skills training through: • American Sign Language Classes Because all of our students are In addition to learning the language required to participate in ASL classes, itself, students in the ASL classes also and the of hearing students are deaf havehard chance to learn about Able to converse with their hearing deaf culture. peers. In the American Sign Language Through American Sign Language students hard of hearing classes, deaf and who were shy have opened the initiative to assist Students takeup as they discovered a their hearing peers. method of communication that works for them. We have seen several cases in which, after first learning how to communicate through ASL, students that were non-communicative began to open up and communicate through a combination of signs and speech. Adult Basic Literacy Adult Basic Literacy Art can be used to teach basic reading and writing skills Reading pictures and drawing words Adult Basic Literacy Art can be used to teach basic reading and writing skills Reading pictures and drawing words Numeric Literacy Numeric Literacy • Student Store By reading independently and presenting to the class a review of what they’ve read, students receive play money which they use to purchase art supplies from our student store. Numeric Literacy • Cooking Numbers can also be fun. In order to learn about fractions, students took to the kitchen to try their hands at cooking. Numeric Literacy • Music & Dance Counting of beats and knowledge of rhythm are also key elements in both the music and dance classes. Numeric Literacy • Art Sales Students brush up on their math skills by selling their artwork. What is learned in the classroom is applied in real life settings. Reading Comprehension Reading Comprehension Students receive literacy training through: • Visual Arts Interpreting poetry and fiction is a key element of learning to read for meaning. Students learn to interpret poetry and fiction through the use of pictures, paintings, collages, and various other forms of art. Reading Comprehension Students receive literacy training through: • Music & Dance Words and music are interpreted in the form of movement as students choreograph dance routines to match the lyrics and the moods of the songs they learn. Reading Comprehension Students receive literacy training through: • Drama Analytical reading is a key component of the VSA arts of Hawaii- Pacific drama classes as students learn to take written words a step further by acting out their interpretations of what they read. Students are working on creating their own script and producing their own play. Reading Comprehension Students receive literacy training through: • A Weekly Literature Circle Although not art related, by having a weekly literature circle, we have noticed an increase in reading comprehension skills as well as an increased desire to read independently. Life Skills • Vocational Skills In life skills classes, students learn how to search for jobs, how to fill out employment applications, and how to do job interviews. Students get hands-on training and work on projects such as searching through the newspaper for want ads that interest them, cutting out these ads, and pasting them onto sheets of paper to form job collages. Life Skills • Vocational Skills Students get experience filling Students are given opportunities out job applications, applications to do practice interviews with each for post-secondary institutions, other and with the staff. and resumes. Students get hands-on training and work on projects such as searching through the newspaper for want ads that interest them, cutting out these ads, and pasting them onto sheets of paper to form job collages. Life Skills • Basic Skills In computer literacy classes, Students also learn practical students learn basic write skills such as how to computer checks by designing to use skills, including how and filling out their own “mock” checks.to set Microsoft Word and how up an e-mail account. In order to learn how to address letters, students created postcards which they wrote messages on and mailed to each other. Literacy Through The Arts Through our literacy through the arts classes, students focus on poetry, fiction, autobiographical writing, employment literacy, numeric literacy, college prep classes, and grammar. All exercises incorporate the arts as a vehicle for learning literacy. Literacy Through The Arts By teaching through the arts, we have discovered that students are a lot more enthusiastic about learning literacy. Literacy Through The Arts This desire to learn has been reflected in their CASAS scores. This past year, approximately 40% of our students using the Reading: Life and Work series progressed to the next level. Literacy Through The Arts Our approach to teaching literacy has also been recognized and praised by: The University of Hawaii College of Education, the Hawaii State Department of Education, the U.S.D.O.E, the Hawaii State Department of Health, and case managers, adult day programs, and adult education providers throughout the state of Hawaii. Literacy Through The Arts Our mission is to be able to reach as many adults with developmental or other lifelong disabilities who have goals of bettering their lives or their careers and to further enhance the symbiotic relationship of art and words.
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