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Content Knowledge in Interdisciplinary Curriculum

Ashley L. Moose

Regent University

In partial fulfillment of UED 496 Field Experience ePortfolio, Spring 2019



The integration of multiple subjects into a single lesson plan or unit is a great way to

support student learning and growth. I strongly believe that student’s learning should all be

connected rather than isolated. While it is not realistic to integrate more than one subject into

every single lesson, I still make it a goal to use materials across multiple subjects whenever

possible. In her research project on the effects of integrating literacy across the curriculum, Kelli

Henderson (2016) says that “students struggle with reading and writing skills when literacy

strategies are not integrated across the curriculum, including in to the content areas of science,

social studies, and math” (p.3). My first student teaching placement was in a fourth grade

English Language Arts (ELA) class. While I was unable to integrate reading and writing into

other content areas, I was able to integrate other content areas into reading and writing. I stove to

make this a priority whenever possible. The main content area that I integrated into my reading

and writing instruction was Science content. I team taught with the Science and Math teacher so

I was able to align my teaching with what she was teaching. This made the day flow better for

my students and helped them to better understand their Science content and enhanced their

reading and writing skills.

Rationale of Selected Artifacts

Science and Reading Lesson Plan

My first artifact shows evidence of how I incorporated Science content into one of my

reading lessons. This lesson was to teach students how to summarize a nonfiction text by

identifying the main idea and supporting details. Summarizing is a skill that my students really

struggled with and summarizing nonfiction was the most difficult for them. I taught them to

“main idea web” strategy to help them determine the important details of a text to include in their

summary. The article that the students read in this lesson discussed how landforms are formed

which connected to the students’ Science content discussion weathering, erosion, and deposition.

The SOL Standard for weathering, erosion, and deposition is a 5th grade standard. However, my

fourth grade class was still learning about it and including it in my lesson really helped them to

make connections in their learning.

History and ELA Lesson Plan

The second artifact that I chose shows how I integrated History with English Language

Arts for a first grade classroom. This lesson plan was created in collaboration with two other

students in one of my courses at Regent University that was titled “Teaching Reading/Language

Arts Across the Curriculum”. This course focuses on teaching me and my peers how to integrate

reading instruction across the elementary curriculum for highly effective teaching. This lesson

plan focused on two SOL Standards; one for History and one for Reading. The “lesson plan” is

actually a week long study of the leaders of the United States through the reading and discussion

of books.

Reflection on Theory and Practice

As I mentioned above, my courses at Regent University greatly prepared me and

equipped me to integrate reading and writing in lessons across the curriculum. The ability to

integrate Language Arts across the curriculum is valuable and highly effective for student

learning and growth. According to a paper by Marjorie Lipson, Sheila Valencia, Karen Wixson,

and Charles Peters (1993), an integrated curriculum has four attributes. “First, an integrated

curriculum is authentic… It is also described as generative, encouraging students to construct

meaning, gain insights, and use new knowledge… By definition, it is also integrative, requiring

and promoting higher order thinking and transference of concepts across the disciplines…

Finally, it is iterative”(Lipson, et. al, p.252, 1993). Integrating multiple content areas into reading

curriculum helps students to transfer their knowledge and to deeply understand content matter.


Henderson, K. P. (2016). ​Effects of integrating literacy across the curriculum (​ Order No.

10191859). Available from ProQuest Central; ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global.

(1860892248). Retrieved from


LIPSON, M., VALENCIA, S., WIXSON, K., & PETERS, C. (1993). Integration and Thematic

Teaching: Integration to Improve Teaching and Learning. ​Language Arts,​ ​70(​ 4), 252-263.

Retrieved from