FRANKFORT, Ky. — Thirteen schools across the Commonwealth will receive a Teaching Art Together grant from the Kentucky Arts Council to conduct artist residencies with students during this school year.
The Teaching Art Together grant allows Kentucky teachers to collaborate with practicing, professional artists from the arts council’s Teaching Artists Directory to design and implement one- to four-week residencies.
Wellington Elementary School in Lexington received $1,200 to bring in teaching artist Susan Pope for a two-week drama residency. Wellington music teacher Laura Bosworth said the decision to apply for a Teaching Art Together grant spun off from a consultancy the school received connected to another arts council program, Specialists With Arts Tactics.
“One of the areas our consultant thought we needed the most work on was drama,” Bosworth said. “Knowing that, and taking the suggestion, we applied for a Teaching Art Together grant for the two-week drama residency. We have teachers that incorporate drama into their lessons, but it’s not the same as having a full-time instructor.”
Pope will work with second-, third-, fourth- and fifth-grade teachers at Wellington, as well as special area teachers, like Bosworth, who teach subjects like music, visual art and physical education. Bosworth said the two-week residency with Pope has broadened students’ educational horizons.
“It’s a really amazing experience for our students. We have students who participate in these kinds of activities after school, but that’s a small number,” Bosworth said. “Having a full-time drama instructor for two weeks is a big advantage. The biggest takeaway is that they are getting one-on-one experience with a professional teaching artist. They’re working on scripts, learning about props, knowing the terminology associated with drama and the theater.”
Another outcome of the residency is that it exposes students to a person who makes their living as an artist.
“That’s a role model for them. This person comes into our school to teach, but she’s very clear explaining this is her profession,” Bosworth said. “The kids know this is how she makes her living. Actually seeing someone who does that has a bigger impact. It’s opening up their world. They know these opportunities exist now.”
Schools receiving Teaching Art Together grants, including county and amount, are:
- Barbourville City School, Knox, $1,200
- Boston School, Nelson, $600
- Cumberland County Elementary School, Cumberland, $600
- Flat Lick Elementary School, Knox, $1,200
- Hacker Elementary School, Clay, $600
- Harrison County Middle School, Harrison, $1,200
- Jackson County Middle School, Jackson, $1,200
- Lloyd McGuffey Sixth Grade Center, Lincoln, $600
- Lynn Camp Schools, Knox, $600
- Paces Creek Elementary, Clay, $600
- Sand Gap Elementary School, Jackson, $1,800
- Wellington Elementary, Fayette, $1,200
- Wright Elementary, Shelby, $2,400
The deadline to apply for fall 2016 residencies is April 15.
More information about the Teaching Art Together grant can be found on the arts council website or by contacting Jean St. John, arts council arts education director, email@example.com or 502-564-3757 ext. 486.
The Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, fosters environments for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts. The arts council is celebrating 50 years of service in 2016.