• Kennedy Center's Changing Education Through the Arts (CETA) Program

    Charles Barrett Elementary School is one of the seven international demonstration schools in the Washington, DC metropolitan area that partners with Kennedy Center's Changing Education Through the Arts (CETA) program. Our school's partnership with the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, which began in 2012, helps teachers develop their expertise in integrating the arts with the teaching of other school subjects (such as history, language arts, and science). This focus on arts-integrated instruction is designed to help all students learn with greater motivation and ease. To that end, the Kennedy Center and the schools work together to develop, implement, and evaluate an in-depth staff development program of courses, workshops, coaching, and study groups.

    The CETA program uses a comprehensive definition of arts integration as its foundation. This definition helps teachers, administrators, and teaching artists know exactly what arts integrations is and how it differs from teaching the arts or just using the arts in the classroom. Arts integration is an approach to teaching which students construct and demonstrate understanding through an art form. Students engage in a creative process which connects an art form and another subject area and meets evolving objectives in both.

    Our resources and partnership with the Kennedy Center allows our staff to host courses at Charles Barrett, take field trips to the Kennedy Center to view performances, and visit other CETA schools to learn more about arts integration. We also host small performances for our students from members of the National Symphony Orchestra. From our relationship with the Kennedy Center, classes take field trips to the National Portrait Gallery where they use their arts integration strategies to read portraits, paintings and sculptures.

    Learn more:The Kennedy Center's definition of arts integration

    CETA Night

    Our sixth annual CETA Night was held on Thursday, October 27, 2016 from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. We had an amazing turnout and the staff was able to showcase our amazingly effective arts strategies. We received great feedback from the community, parents and other CETA schools!

    Hardworking Staff and Students

    The staff at Charles Barrett Elementary has made "CETA" and its arts integration strategies a daily school-wide routine. More than 75% of our staff has earned a 'Certificate of Study' from the Kennedy Center and all staff currently participate in CETA courses offered in the area. Our students and teachers enjoy the arts integration strategies and it has made our building environment positive and cohesive.

    Comments from Students:

    "I like to move my body to make lines and shapes. I can make patterns with my body too! It is fun and I learn a lot with my friends. I have learned to control my body and voice. This helps me." — kindergarten student

    "I like CETA because it is fun. I can do tableau and sign the contract and it is a fun way to learn in school." — first grade student

    "It's fun and even though I knew some stuff from before, I still forget some stuff. So I learn it again and learn even more. I like making groups and tableaus because its a little fun." — second grade student

    "The thing I like most about CETA is tableau. You get to make a picture with your body. And you get to do this with your friends. You tell a story without words." — third grade student

    "I like it because it helps me learn how to cooperate with other kids." — fourth grade student

    "It's makes me feel calmer before we start lessons. I feel more balanced and ready. It helps me remember what we're learning on a deeper level." — fifth grade student

    Charles Barrett Teacher's Memorable CETA Moments:

    "The CETA Partnership with the Kennedy Center has enriched my teaching and my students' learning in numerous ways. Prior to introducing CETA as a teaching and learning strategy, I felt that I was only reaching a small percentage of my students. The CETA strategies have also helped my students in ways that are not measured academically."

    "We observed artwork during math, by Kandinsky, to describe different geometric shapes and attributes. It was wonderful to see students who are generally hesitant to participate openly sharing their observations with confidence and conviction. CETA strategies like this one provide students with a forum to express themselves without fear of failure."

    "I used the structure of Pass the Painting to do multiple activities where kids "Pass the circle", the "geometric painting" or the "Function." Then the students in pairs solve the problem, discuss and name the parts of a circle, or define shapes, moods, and colors they see. This has helped increase students vocabulary acquisition immensely."

    "The CETA Moving Through Patterns unit was a powerful, engaging, kinesthetic way to introduce the concept of repeating patterns. The children loved being a conductor or part of the orchestra extending and creating their own repeating patterns using their bodies and their voices. All students were successful and engaged in the learning process, could demonstrate their understanding, and shared their experience with their families."