Advocacy & Policy

Position Statement on Utilizing Quality Resources to Build Meaningful Curriculum

[Adopted April 2020; Reviewed and Revised April 2023]

NAEA recognizes building rigorous, culturally relevant, and coherent curriculum, is developed through educator and learner passion and curiosity. In developing meaningful, engaging, and pedagogically powerful curriculum, art educators use quality, research-informed and evidence-based resources. Curriculum should reflect the diversity of all learners through the introduction and study of historical and current art, artists and media. Curriculum that is relatable and relevant allows for all learners to see themselves as part of both the learning and artistic processes of creating, connecting, presenting, and responding.

Quality resources provide guidance in the inclusion of essential content that incorporates metacognitive thinking and inquiry. Comprehensive curricular resources should inform flexible,emerging, and inclusive opportunities with learners. Curriculum is built to support learning through a scaffolded approach, utilizing scope and sequence allowing for differentiated discovery, and modeling artistic behaviors/thinking.

NAEA encourages educators to move beyond isolated learning activities, and into developmentally-appropriate curriculum that provides richer and deeper interconnections, conceptual thinking, and learner agency through voice and choice. Purposeful curriculum encourages learners to stretch beyond a single idea, and places global awareness, creating, and exploration at the center of art education.

Defining Language:
Curriculum - A series of carefully planned and sequenced units that build upon or scaffold students’ growing knowledge and skills (Baxter, K. 2019, Creating Vibrant Art Lesson Plans, A Teachers Sketchbook)


The Qualities of Quality: Understanding Excellence in Arts Education:Steve Seidel, Shari Tishman, Ellen Winner, Lois Hetland, Patricia Palmer; Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education

National Core Arts Standards: A Conceptual Framework for Arts Learning,

A Shared Endeavor: Arts Education for America’s Students