Arts Across the Curriculum

What is this?

This project has been designed to explore the contribution that the arts, working across the school curriculum, can make to children’s education and motivation.

The project is based on the notion that: by using arts as an interventionist partnership with, and methodology for, other subject areas; by building working relationships between teachers, pupils, artists, arts organisations and community; and by threading the creative process throughout the school curriculum, measurable benefits can occur in teaching, learning, school and community ethos and communication, attainment, achievement and school attendance, along with raised awareness of, and improved practice of the arts themselves. The proposal is based on a study that the Scottish Arts Council has been making for several years of the Chicago ‘Arts Impacting Achievement’(AIA) project.

The central rationale underpinning the whole Arts Across the Curriculum project is increasing performance of students. The Chicago model has shown that achievement in all curriculum areas (including but not exclusively in the expressive arts) improved when artists were involved in well planned team teaching with the class teacher. The project will be tailored to fit Scottish systems and to match with national and local priorities. Partnership working, thorough training for teachers and artists, quality planning time for artists and teachers as well as rigorous evaluation mechanisms will be key elements of the project in Scotland. The rationale of the AIA project and the core implementation strategy, the integrated curricular lessons (ICL’s) will be central to the project.

An ICL is an integrated curricular lesson. It is a lesson integrating core curriculum with an artistic process and project. The unit uses art and culture to motivate students and deepen their understanding of a content area while exposing them to an art form. The unit is both planned and taught through an artist/teacher team.

The Scottish pilot project will run for a total of three years on the basis that it will require one year to set up and start running, one to bed in and one to be fully functional. It will be piloted in the following seven local authorities:

FLaT involvement?

FLaT support is being provided to explore the use of expressive arts across the curriculum, linked to raising pupil achievement and motivation levels, as well as improving school ethos.

  1. Achievement and Attainment
  2. Framework for Learning
  3. Inclusion and Equality
  4. Values and Citizenship
  5. Learning for Life

Project aims?

Project outcomes?

1 A body of teachers:

2 A body of pupils:

3 A body of evidence which includes:

4 A body of schools:


The project started in September 2004 and will run till September 2007

Level of Support?

FLaT support is a grant of £840,880, plus evaluation costs

Who are the evaluation team?

Not yet appointed.