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Exploring Cultures Through the Arts By Jacqueline Kahan and Christina Ramsay Ed200 Curriculum Project ‘06 Trinity College Introduction

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exploring cultures through the arts
Exploring Cultures Through the Arts

By Jacqueline Kahan and Christina Ramsay

Ed200 Curriculum Project ‘06

Trinity College

  • Our curriculum is a month long unit on cultures through the lenses of language, music and dance. Each week the students will study one culture, the culture’s music, and a dance from the culture of the week.
  • The lesson plans we will focus on are from the second week of the unit which is on merengue and the Dominican Republic.
  • Who? 5th graders
  • What? The Exploration of Merengue and

the Dominican Republic

  • Where? Hartford public classrooms
  • When? 2-3 hours per day
Bloom’s Taxonomy

Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences





CT Framework

Under The Arts

Under Social Studies

Cooperative Learning

  • Students will be exposed to a variety cultures.
  • Students will compare and contrast the different cultures, music, and dances in the unit.
  • Students will express themselves through movement and music.
  • Students will collaborate with each other and hone their interpersonal skills
  • Students will construct a dance performance

(with teacher’s assistance)

day 2 music day
Day 2 – Music Day!
  • Folk Song
  • Sing-a-long
  • Discussion comparing merengue folk song to songs students know
  • Create their own folk songs in groups
  • Presentation on merengue music by ethnomusicologist/musician
  • Main Objectives: Students will develop an understanding of merengue music
  • Students will demonstrate cultural understanding by using linguistic, musical and interpersonal intelligences
day 4 let s dance
Day 4 – Let’s Dance!
  • Learn the basic merengue steps (together) from merengue expert
  • Practice basic steps in pairs
  • Students will be evaluated based on participation and effort displayed
  • Main Objectives: Students will demonstrate bodily-kinesthetic intelligence through learning merengue steps.
  • Students will learn to make connections between dance and music.
  • Students develop “acceptable” ways of releasing energy and expressing themselves creatively
  • Interdisciplinary learning integrates different academic subjects, which fosters higher-level thinking
  • Our curriculum project employs several learning approaches and intelligences that takes into account different learning styles.