Connecting Folk Arts with Common Core State Standards
Folk arts curricula may align with specific learning skills identified with Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts, a national college preparedness initiative that many states have adapted. We do not view the following as a comprehensive list, and we invite educators to see this as a starting point for identifying how folk arts might connect with their classroom learning needs.
When using folk arts activities, tools, and artist residencies, students will often gain knowledge and instruction in these Common Core skills:
- Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats;
- Gain literary and cultural knowledge, as well as familiarity with various text structures and elements;
- Develop the capacity to build knowledge on a subject through writing and research; and
- Increase their vocabulary for describing political, social, or economic aspects of history/social science.
The descriptions that follow are not standards themselves but instead offer a portrait of students who master the standards in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language, and may then exhibit with increasing fullness and regularity these capacities of the literate individual who is college and career ready.
- They demonstrate independence.
- They build strong content knowledge.
- They respond to the varying demands of audience, task, purpose, and discipline.
- They comprehend as well as critique.
- They value evidence.
- They use technology and digital media strategically and capably.
- They come to understand other perspectives and cultures
There are also standards that specifically mention folk arts and related topics, for example:
Key Ideas and Details:
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.2 Recount stories, including fables and folktales from diverse cultures, and determine their central message, lesson, or moral.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.2 Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas:
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.7 Analyze how visual and multimedia elements contribute to the meaning, tone, or beauty of a text (e.g., graphic novel, multimedia presentation of fiction, folktale, myth, poem).
Folk Arts Education helps students better understand multiple points of view in their communities and schools. This core value is a goal of Local Learning. It is not a standard measured through tests, but instead it is discovered in the quality of our lives. This also supports social-emotional learning through scaffolded activities to foster empathy, tolerance of difference, and home-school connectedness.
 Some activities also clearly align with History and Social Studies standards. Contact us to learn more.