Network Initiatives

Can abstract concepts of science be physicalized and taught through dance?
Project or Program Summary
Please provide a summary of the project/program as demonstrated in the case study: 
Young Audiences of Connecticut implemented a Science and Dance ten day residency utilizing dance to teach human body systems to 7th grade science students at Roosevelt School in Bridgeport Connecticut. This is an urban school faced with many challenges. It was chosen because the principal believes in the power of arts-in-education and is hoping to have it play a greater role in her school. The residency was delivered by Adam Battelstein, dance artist, with administrative and mentoring support from Mike Kachuba, Education Consultant for YACONN.
Portfolio Purpose and Rational
Portfolio Purpose and Rationale: Why has this case study been submitted?: 
This residency offered many challenges and difficulties for the artist and teacher to overcome. The majority of the students exhibited emotional and social behavior difficulties; the school is in the early stages of a major transformation; the students come from a neighborhood that is rife with drugs, guns, violence, and poverty.
Overall Conclusions
What are your overall conclusions regarding the documentation gathered for this case study?: 
That it is possible to teach the abstract concepts of body systems through dance. Students who had a difficult time engaging with the science material, became more engaged through dance. The program could even be more successful, if the residency was longer.
Assessment Conclusions
What conclusions have you drawn from the responses to the assessment tools you have developed?: 
The students “physicalizing” the concepts of the human body system through their dance demonstrations provided a unique and different form of assessment that the traditional test/paper format. In addition to the dance moves, the students had to orally transmit information to their peers and teacher, explaining exactly what their dance represented and how it demonstrated the workings of the human body. The conclusion is that this offered an alternative assessment tool, allowing students to be successful who might not do well in the traditional system.
Answering the Inquiry Question
Back to the initial inquiry question, can it be answered?: 
Yes. This is true even with a resistant population of middle school students.
Conclusions: What Was Learned
What was learned?: 
We learned that with a population facing the challenges that this particular population faced, the artist needs to be “embedded “ into the school for longer than 10 visits to really achieve success. The students needed more time to establish a bond with the teaching artist to create a long-term teaching relationship. We also learned that more in-depth planning pertaining to class management, discipline, and scheduling priority is essential in schools in transition.
Conclusions: What Can Be Done Differently In The Future
What can be done differently in the future?: 
Identify the grade/classes that would most benefit from such a program. While some students in the 7th grade benefitted from this program, we were told by both the principal and a 6th grade teacher towards the end of the project that the 6th grade class would have had better participation in a project such as this, and therefore, more students would have benefitted.
Conclusions: How Will This Inform The Work Moving Forward
How will this inform the work moving forward?: 
The workshops themselves are fine as they stand. The artist has a great ability to engage students and he understands how to make abstract concepts concrete. He is a gifted dancer and teacher. In the future, we will have more in-depth planning sessions.
Core Content Standards
Science / Dimension 2: Crosscutting Concepts That Have Common Applications Across Fields: 
Cause and effect: Mechanism and explanation
Systems and system models
Energy and matter: Flows, cycles, and conservation
Structure and function
Science / Dimension 3: Core Ideas In Four Disciplinary Areas / Physical Sciences: 
Motion and stability: Forces and interactions
Science / Dimension 3: Core Ideas In Four Disciplinary Areas / Life Sciences: 
From molecules to organisms: Structures and processes
21st Century Learning Skills
Health Literacy
Learning and Innovation / Creativity and Innovation: 
Think Creatively
Work Creatively with Others
Implement Innovations
Learning and Innovation / Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: 
Reason Effectively
Use Systems Thinking
Make Judgments and Decisions
Solve Problems
Learning and Innovation / Communication and Collaboration: 
Communicate Clearly
Collaborate with Others
Information, Media and Technology / Information Literacy: 
Access and Evaluate Information
Use and Manage Information
Life and Career / Flexibility and Adaptability: 
Adapt to Change
Be Flexible
Life and Career / Initiative and Self-Direction: 
Manage Goals and Time
Work Independently
Be Self-directed Learners
Life and Career / Social and Cross-Cultural : 
Interact Effectively with Others
Work Effectively in Diverse Teams
Life and Career / Leadership and Responsiblity: 
Guide and Lead Others
Produce Results
National Core Arts Standards
National Core Arts Standards: 
Local Standards
Describe Any Local Standards Met By The Program: 
This residency reflected CT Dance Standards 1-4. 1. Elements and Skills: students will identify and perform movement elements and dance skills. 2. Choreography: Students will understand choreographic principles, processes, and structures. 3. Meaning: Students will understand how dance creates and communicates meaning. 4. Thinking Skills: Students will apply analytical and evaluative thinking skills in dance. This residency reflected CT Science Core Standard 7.2: Many organisms, including humans, have specialized organ systems that interact with each other to maintian dynamic internal balance.

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Project Summary
Science Technology
Institutional Overview
Young Audiences of Connecticut
3074 Whitney Avenue
06518 Hamden , CT
United States
Connecticut US
School District(s)
Bridgeport Public Schools
45 Lyon Terrace
06604 Bridgeport , CT
United States
Connecticut US
Roosevelt School
680 Park Avenue
06604 Bridgeport , CT
United States
Connecticut US
Kristin Morgan
Subject Taught: 
Teaching Artist(s)
Adam Battelstein
Artist Field(s):