EDEN 528: Teaching Children’s Literature: An Arts Approach

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Josh Painting
Instructor:  Catherine Ring                                          Teacher tries out new ideas for engaging students


 EDEN 528  Teaching Children’s Literature: An Arts Approach (pre-K-6)

This course has been approved for 071 Library Media endorsement (Maine DoE)


This course is designed for teachers of kindergarten through grade 6.  A rationale for integrating the arts will be provided, including strong evidence that the arts enhance student achievement in other academic areas.  Practical strategies for using visual art, poetry, drama, story telling and music to enhance children’s experience and understanding of literature will be a major part of the course.  Discussions will include a review of genres in children’s literature.

Integrating the arts and literature fosters the active participation and in-depth understanding that it is as important for practicing teachers as it is for elementary-school children.  Combined with an emphasis on multi-cultural and international literature, the focus on the aesthetic and artistic aspects of literature, music, the visual arts and drama promotes culturally responsive and researched-based teaching, making reading more inviting to diverse groups with varied learning styles.  Multiple points of entry open up new dimensions in literature, helping readers develop their unique talents and abilities.


Encountering Children’s Literature:  An Arts Approach.  Jane M. Gangi., Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon, 2003. Click here to buy at Amazon.com

Internet access is a requirement during the course. 



  • Upon successful completion of this course, educators will be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the value of arts education as inspiration for student success based on current research.
  • Apply many useful resources on specific ideas on the connections between the arts and other content areas.
  • Design quality arts/literacy lesson plans and/or units using the Understanding by Design model
  • Practice immersion in hands-on arts lessons and share with classes.
  • Utilize integrative technology tools (wikis, digital media) throughout the course.
  • Experience and understand different genres of children’s literature.
  • Apply practical strategies in the classroom using drama, music, poetry, visual art and/or storytelling to enhance children’s understanding of literature.