“Model School Status for MAE!”
Madison Avenue Elementary was awarded the status of “Model School” by the Whole Schools Initiative last July. Last school year, Art teacher, Mrs. Amy Ramsey, and Music Teacher, Mrs. Elthea Harrison, submitted an application. As part of the application process, a panel of reviewers visited the school, toured classrooms, and interviewed teachers and students to determine the quality of arts integration in the classroom. This panel observed that art is not limited to an art project in the classroom or the art room at MAE. Instead, students experience the vibrancy of music, drama, dance, and visual art opportunities not just in the special area classes, but also in the regular classrooms, as well. MAE is one of nine schools in the state and one of two schools in Madison with this distinguished status.
The “Model School” honor provides grant money for professional development. Our teachers attend workshops and conferences where they can discuss ways to improve teaching through the arts. MAE further demonstrates its commitment to the arts by inviting nationally known speakers like Melanie Layne from the Kennedy Arts Center and Bobby Norfolk, an Emmy-award winning storyteller and teaching artist, to our school to give dynamic and instructional presentations.
Arts integration is an invaluable teaching strategy for engaging students in the course material and creating teachable moments that outlast the academic school year. Studies also show increased standardized test scores, increased community and parent involvement, and improved teacher morale. With art integration everyone wins!