smART stART focuses on a first grade student’s ability to retell a story with a beginning, middle, and end as well as the narrative elements of a story. It is an eight-session, in-classroom residency taught by an Alliance Arts for Learning (AA4L) Institute teaching artist, and it also serves as a professional learning model for educators, supporting teacher effectiveness in content delivery and innovative, differentiated instructional strategies. Schools choose dance, music, or visual art as the focus for their smART stART residency.

The purpose of the smART stART residency is to support students’ understanding of narrative structure. Student outcomes focus on the students’ ability to increase reading comprehension. The specific skills focus on the ability to tell and retell a story, including sequencing and narrative elements.  At the residency’s conclusion, students will exhibit and share their work in a culminating event, which may include the other smART stART classrooms, the school community, and/or parents.

The program is research-based and fully aligned with the Common Core Georgia Performance Standards in English Language Arts, the Georgia Performance standards in Fine Arts and with 21st Century Skills.

For more information, contact Rebecca Pogue at or 404.733.5329.

For information about smART stART research, click here.


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