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Art of the Islamic World: A New Resource for Teachers

Claire Moore, Assistant Museum Educator

Posted: Friday, November 30, 2012

Art of the Islamic World

«The importance of the Islamic world within current geopolitics and the global context in which we live makes the study of these regions essential in K–12 classrooms around the world.» Students can gain valuable perspectives on art, culture, history, science, and the world around them by learning about the outstanding aesthetic and intellectual achievements of the Islamic world over twelve centuries as reflected in the Museum's exemplary collection. In response to this need, the Museum is delighted to present a new online and printed publication, Art of the Islamic World: A Resource for Educators. This is the latest edition in a series of guides developed to help K–12 teachers integrate works of art in their teaching through dynamic lessons that promote observation, investigation, and critical-thinking skills.

Every year the Museum welcomes more than two hundred thousand students and their teachers to explore the collections. Printed and online resources help teachers incorporate works of art in their classroom teaching and prepare for visits to the Met.

A collaboration between the Museum's Islamic Art and Education departments, this new resource provides informational texts, maps, and essays investigating topics ranging from Islam to calligraphy through in-depth units that highlight forty-six works of art from the Arab lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and later South Asia. Also included are thirteen lesson plans aligned with National Standards and Common Core State Standards supporting English language arts, mathematics, science, visual arts, and world history instruction.

Collaboration with the Met's first K–12 educator advisory group played a vital role in the development of this guide. Ten active New York State classroom teachers reviewed the entire contents of the resource, contributed lesson plans, and tested materials with students during the school year following the reopening of the new installation of the Islamic Art department galleries. Their involvement ensured the relevance of this resource for students at all grade levels, bringing together rich contextual information from leading specialists, best practices for object-based teaching, and meaningful connections with school curricula.

While many of the Met's K–12 educator printed publications are available as free PDFs, Art of the Islamic World is the Museum's first truly digital resource for teachers, created collaboratively with members of the Digital Media Department. To obtain the printed version of the guide, which includes posters, a CD, and a gallery guide for children, teachers may request a complimentary copy (one copy is available free of charge to every New York City public school); borrow the resource from Nolen Library in the Museum's Ruth and Harold D. Uris Center for Education; purchase a copy for $79.95 in the Museum Store, online or by phone (1-800-662-3397) (Museum Members receive a discount). When purchasing in the Museum Store, an educational discount is available upon presentation of a valid school ID.

These educational materials are made possible by The Olayan Group. Additional support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

Department(s): Education, Islamic Art
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About the Author

Claire Moore is an assistant Museum educator in the Education Department.

About this Blog

Now at the Met offers in-depth articles and multimedia features about the Museum's current exhibitions, events, research, announcements, behind-the-scenes activities, and more.