George Lucas Educational Foundation

Integrated Studies

Discover innovations and best practices for combining multiple academic subjects to prepare students for a world where all knowledge is integrated.

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Overview

What Is Integrated Studies?

Integrated studies combines curriculum from two or more disciplines, allowing students to see how ideas are connected. Teaching in such a contextual manner promotes collaboration, critical thinking, and knowledge retention. Watch an introduction video.

History

Integrated Studies: A Short History

Venerable educators from John Dewey to Howard Gardner have extolled the virtues of studying subjects in a holistic, contextual way rather than in a vacuum. Learn more.

Experts

What the Experts Say

Great things can happen when teachers break out of their silos and collaborate across subjects. Here's what researchers, educators, and curriculum writers have to say about the benefits of integrated studies. See what the experts say.

Why

Why Should Schools Embrace Integrated Studies?

To increase engagement and retention, academic subjects are presented in an interdisciplinary fashion that reflects modern knowledge and society. For instance, history, literature, and art can be interwoven and taught through text, images, and sound. See why.

Research

Research: The Effectiveness of Integrated Studies

Discover seven key approaches in effective curriculum integration, get our specific recommendations on evidence-based practices and programs, and learn about pitfalls to avoid. Dig deeper.

Discuss

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Arts Integration: Resource Roundup

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Browse

Boy looking up, writing with pencil
Article

Point of Entry: Poetry in the Classroom

Poetry is a versatile medium for the classroom, useful for student introduction and reflection, word study, characterization, the mechanics of writing, and examining larger themes.

226 4,485 views
High Tech High's Vocational and Academic Model
Schools That Work

Integrating Academic and Vocational Learning at High Tech High

High Tech High School's four academies provide students with a range of vocational majors, connecting them with real-world contexts and teaching 21st-century skills.

170 5,232 views
Integrated Learning: Broadcasting and Social Studies
Schools That Work

Integrated Learning: Broadcasting and Social Studies

Engage history students with the challenge of creating and producing their own radio program to share their knowledge and ideas with a wide audience.

3 227 3,737 views
Integrated Learning: One Project, Several Disciplines
Schools That Work

Integrated Learning: One Project, Several Disciplines

For any project within a vocational major, High Tech High encourages teachers and students to include relevant content from other subject areas to enhance real-world connections.

2 165 9,966 views
Boy wearing gardening gloves working with starter plants
Article

Garden-Based Learning

School and community gardens can be used for academic enrichment, where students can learn about nutrition, food security, and ecological sustainability.

6 787 16,693 views
Integrated Studies: Sustainability and Cross-Curricular Connections
Schools That Work

Integrated Studies: Sustainability and Cross-Curricular Connections

By connecting the theme of sustainability across multiple disciplines, the teachers at Montpelier High School have built a robust, integrated teaching approach that engages students and creates community.

258 10,215 views
A photo of an elementary-school boy sitting at the lunch table eating an apple.
Article

A Delectable and Academically Integrated School Lunch?

NYC's Calhoun School serves healthy lunches that are educational, affordable, and eagerly anticipated by students. Their lead chef also describes how the program is scalable.

177 3,239 views

Pages

Students at Bates Middle School in Annapolis learn about art concepts such as photo composition that are integrated into other curricula like math. Photo credit: Zachary Fink
article

Integrated Studies Research Review

Learn why and how integrated studies can be effective and get recommendations for evidence-based practices and programs.

2 281 13,704 views
Kids Invest in Funds -- and Their Own Future
video

Kids Invest in Funds -- and Their Own Future

At Chicago's Ariel Community Academy, students in grades K-8 hone math skills and learn practical, lifelong lessons in finance by managing a $20,000 class stock portfolio.

16 43 13,205 views
Article

Classroom Catalysts: Inventive Teachers Ignite Self-Guided Learning

Welcome to Brightworks, an independent school that functions as an open laboratory of hands-on engagement with teachers and students as partners in discovery.

3 692 12,956 views
Article

The Happy Eating Place: How Elementary Students Can Run Their Own Business

Fourth and fifth graders develop a service learning project that prepares meals for their school community and donates the proceeds to a county food bank.

6 54 12,707 views
George Lucas on Teaching Visual Literacy and Communications
video

George Lucas: Teaching "Communication"

An interview with the founder and chairman of the George Lucas Educational Foundation on the new visual language of learning and teaching.

24 337 12,209 views
How Gardening Enables Interdisciplinary Learning
video

How Gardening Enables Interdisciplinary Learning

High school student Pierre combined biology, math, economics, and more to transform his campus greenhouse into a sustainable aquaponic system that provides fresh vegetables for the cafeteria.

1 61 11,959 views
Mixing Art + Politics -- Integrated Studies in High School
video

Schools That Work: Mixing Art + Politics -- Integrated Studies in High School

Video: Teachers Dayna Laur (AP government) and Katlyn Wolfgang (art) at Central York High School in York, PA, share their strategies for creating successful integrated studies projects.

2 66 11,959 views

Pages

Using Today's Technology Tools to Study Yesterday's
Video

Using Today's Technology Tools to Study Yesterday's

A fifth-grade field trip from Ferryway School, near Boston, to the nation's oldest ironworks is captured with the latest tech.

66 34 9,717 views
York teachers
Blog

Integrating Art and Politics to Improve High School Student Engagement

Two teachers at Central York High School in York, PA, share their strategies for creating successful integrated studies projects.

6 147 2,242 views
Blog

How to Creatively Integrate Science and Math

Blogger Ben Johnson makes a case for more collaboration between math and science teachers.

39 109 55,063 views
Article

Kaleidoscopic Learning: An Overview of Integrated Studies

Interdisciplinary learning develops real-world, multifaceted knowledge.

2 17 10,215 views