Steam and Project-Based Learning in the Elementary General Music Classroom

September 5, 2018 / By: Meaghan E. Curry

Twenty-first century education encompasses many approaches based in constructivist learning theory, including project-based learning (PBL); science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) instruction; and arts integration. The purpose of this project was to explore 21st century education and its implementation in an elementary general music classroom. PBL, STEAM, and arts integration involve student-centered, multifaceted exploration of complex problems and questions and require that teachers adopt a flexible, reflective approach to teaching and learning. Creativity, collaboration, and relevance are essential as students make sense of their knowledge and experiences, so the general music classroom is an ideal environment for deep learning through 21st century approaches. The author offers an overview of her own experiences teaching music at a STEAM school and created outlines for projects that integrate music with English language arts, theater, science, social studies, and visual art.