Curriculum and Instruction

Cultural Arts Academy Charter School at Spring Creek is a bold, new vision for public education in the East New York section of Brooklyn, New York. It is an academically rigorous, standards-based school of excellence that:

  • Provides order, security, role models and mentors, high expectations and ample opportunities for students to explore, discover, research and investigate and view mistakes as opportunities for further growth.
  • Has personalized, print-rich classrooms where high priority is placed on developing the whole child through multi-sensory approaches that provide for individual differences.
  • Incorporates research-based curriculum initiatives, strategies and techniques that help meet students’ needs for security, approval, belonging, prestige, achievement and self-esteem. 
  • Employs classroom organization and management techniques that help students become self-directed learners in a collaborative, cooperative environment.
  • Provides and supports effective teaching and innovative instructional strategies through cutting edge professional development and the creation and maintenance of professional portfolios.

The instructional environment and practices of CAA that we believe foster high student achievement and success, emanate from the eight University of Pittsburgh’s Principles of Learning:

  • Organizing for Effort
  • Clear Expectations
  • Recognition of Accomplishment
  • Fair and Credible Evaluations
  • Academic Rigor in a Thinking Curriculum
  • Accountable Talk
  • Socializing Intelligence
  • Learning as Apprenticeship

The core elements of the Cultural Arts Academy Charter School at Spring Creek core curriculum include:

  • Differentiation
  • Cultural Arts Infusion
  • Cooperative Learning
  • Research-based curriculum
  • Extended Instructional Time
  • Professional Development
  • Character Education 
  • Technology Infusion


The research-based curriculum and instructional practices reflect an interdisciplinary arts-infused approach interwoven into the sciences, humanities and mathematics. The integration of the arts will enable students to think independently, reason cogently, and gain skills in decision-making, problem solving, collaboration and self-management, and assist them in mastering the New York State Common Core Learning Standards. Our teaching artist work side-by-side with the content area teacher. The cultural arts initiative features annual lectures, film festivals, seminars, colloquia with outstanding authors, artists and scholars and live performances, beginning, intermediate, advanced, and master classes, independent study in music, dance, theater and drama and the visual and fine arts, guest lecturers, clinicians, production and management, an audio school, band, orchestra and choir. Our goal is for our students to graduate with a Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation through the Arts.