Designing Your Art Curriculum

Designing Your Art Curriculum

Art teachers are unique in many ways. One of those ways is that we are empowered to design our own curriculum, and for most of us, we wouldn’t have it any other way. Yet, that freedom comes with its own set of challenges. Like with a blank canvas, knowing where to start can often be a struggle.

Designing Your Art Curriculum is a rigorous, hands-on class where you’ll research what some of the best districts and programs in the nation are using for their art curriculum, as well as observe different styles and types of art curriculums being used and marketed today. Using this data as ammunition, you’ll design your own comprehensive tool kit with all the necessary pieces to implement a curriculum that best fits your teaching, your students and their needs.

Graduate Credits
Contact Hours Total
Graduate Credits / PD Hours 3 Graduate Credits / 135 PD Hours
Price Non-Graduate Credit $447.00 / Graduate Credit $897.00
Thu Sat
Mar 1 Apr 7
Upcoming Course Run Dates
Mar 1 Apr 7
Apr 1 May 7
May 1 Jun 7
Jun 1 Jul 7
Only 7 days remaining to enroll in this course.
Course Code
EDUC500 AOE007
Morningside College
Higher Learning Commission


  • Discuss traditional and contemporary philosophies which drive curricula in the art classroom setting.
  • Research and evaluate trends which have impacted art education pedagogy on the local, national and global levels.
  • Analyze diverse examples of visual arts K-12 curricula.
  • Plan and present comprehensive curricula for use in the art classroom setting.

Course Breakdown

Week 1
Philosophies in Art Curriculum
  1. Explore why you teach art and what you hope students will take away from your classes.
  2. Discover various art philosophies and consider which one aligns with the way your teach.
Week 2
Art Curriculum Samples
  1. Consider what a comprehensive curriculum needs in order to thrive.
  2. Browse curriculum map samples for use in designing your own art curriculum.
Week 3
Putting Together Your Curriculum
  1. Begin to map out the basic standards and experiences you want students to have in the art room.
  2. Explore ways to ensure students are getting an authentic creative experience in the art room.
Week 4
Putting Together Your Curriculum
  1. Download and complete three planning matrices for organizing your curriculum.
  2. Discuss the planning choices you made and why you made them.
  3. Create an action plan to personalize student learning and ignite their creativity.
Week 5
Organizing Your Curriculum Resources
  1. Write an action plan for how you’ll keep curriculum and resources more organized.
  2. Leave the class with a comprehensive tool kit that houses all of your lesson plans, organizational tools and reflections from this class.

Philosophies in Art Education

A sample assignment from Week 1 of the class "Designing Your Art Curriculum."

1. Research

Use Simon Sinek’s “Golden Circle” to design the purpose behind your art program. Explore various websites to learn about art education philosophies and contemplate which philosophy aligns with the way you teach—and why.

2. Discussion

Share with educators around the world your opinion on “canned” or pre-done art curriculum. Talk about ideas you’ve learned that have changed the way you think about teaching art.

3. Practical, Hands-On Application

Decide on a direction you want to take your curriculum materials that engage students and energize your teaching methods. Create an action plan to implement your philosophy throughout the remainder of the course.
Stormy S.
"This course helped my get organized with my art program. Through discussion board postings and collaboration from other students, I was able to learn new perspectives in art education and new strategies. This was a great experience and I learned more in this class about art education and curriculums then in my undergrad and grad school together."
Sheila J.
"This was honestly the most useful graduate course I think I've ever taken. What we did was so relevant, useful, and not available anywhere else. I wish my whole department would be able take this course. Thanks so much for offering it!"
Chris S.
"I took this class just to help me re-think my teaching. I have been teaching quite a while and although I feel that I am a seasoned teacher, I learned so much. Everyone should take time to re-evaluate their program and this class does such a good job in guiding you through the process."

What do past course participants think?

Hundreds of art teachers have taken the course “Designing Your Art Curriculum”. Here’s what they actually think — without cherry-picking.
(12 month rolling average from all post-course survey respondents – Updated 6/1/17)







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