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Why Our High Schools Need the Arts Paperback – December 16, 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Teachers College Press (December 16, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780807752869
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807752869
  • ASIN: 080775286X
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.9 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #509,373 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jessica Hoffmann Davis is a cognitive developmental psychologist and founder of the Arts in Education Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She is the author of Why Our Schools Need the Arts, Framing Education as Art, and Ordinary Gifted Children.

More About the Author

When it comes to education, I was "born in a trunk." My family lived in the attic of the progressive school that my mother directed in New York City. For us, life was school and school was life. That experience is described in my memoir, "Ordinary Gifted Children: The Power and Promise of Individual Attention." Arts were daily subjects at Hoffmann School and they provided unique opportunities for learning and development. In my more recent life as a teacher and researcher, I've observed that most of us lose touch with the arts somewhere in middle childhood. Do we move on to other modes of expression that we find or are told are more important? Do we miss the chance to make art because it isn't included in the school day? Why are the arts-the highest forms of human expression-puhed to the side or eliminated in schools today? I explore questions like these in my book, "Framing Education as Art: The Octopus has a Good Day" (there's a funny story behind the title). After years of advocating for the arts, I wrote a manifesto for arts advocacy called "Why Our Schools Need the Arts" and I have just completed a sequel that addresses one of our most pressing educational challenges--the alarming dropout rate in our high schools: "Why Our High Schools Need the Arts." I hope these resources are useful to parents, teachers, and anyone who wants to learn about or make better our children's lives at school. Please visit my author website: and let me know what you think.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By sjmurphy on January 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
Jessica Hoffmann Davis has written extensively on the importance of arts programs in our schools. In her new book, "Why Our High Schools Need the Arts," she continues her arts "manifesto" while venturing into new territory that is specific to the goals of our nation's secondary schools. Tangible evidence is considered regarding the potential impact of quality arts programs on the ever-increasing high school drop-out rate. The role of drama as a catalyst for adolescent success is examined. How the arts can address teenage social/emotional issues and encourage empathy, respect and self-esteem is discussed. This book is highly recommended for high school arts teachers, high school teachers who incorporate the arts and creativity into other subjects, school administrators, and politicians who are interested in the improvement of secondary school education.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Artsy on May 11, 2012
Format: Paperback
Author talks about the alarming dropout rate in high schools and presents an evidence-base argument that increasing arts education in the high school curriculum will keep children in school. Very important subject matter, must read and act.
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