2 HOW TO START Determine the needs in your community. Meet with the appropriate people to find out if such a program is needed. Start small and strive for success. ArtREACH began as a simple, weekly arts program to a local homeless shelter for women and children. Set up as a museum outreach, the art educator would bring a large art box full of materials for the evening s activities. The families enjoyed creating art together in a stable and fun atmosphere. ArtREACH grew slowly as it served more students and was gaining an exemplary reputation in the community. ArtREACH is now a bustling daily program coinciding with the school calendar. Over 100 students, grades K-8th, attend ArtREACH each year, learning about fine arts, theater, and music, while gaining valuable academic assistance. Serving nine local shelters and reaching students from all of Broward County Schools, the 6 th largest school district in the nation, ArtREACH has proved to be an invaluable program helping underserved student populations. The following information will help your organization decide which program setup is most suitable to your museum s resources: Outreaches Perhaps your organization has not worked with homeless shelters before, has limited funding, or is not located in a central urban center. An outreach-based program can lay the groundwork for the future while benefiting homeless families today. A Daily Program Learn about the building blocks of a successful daily after school arts program for the homeless.
3 How to Start an Arts Outreach Program Shelter Outreaches The overall scope and size of your arts program will depend largely on available resources and partners involved. Maybe the museum has little shelter contact, limited funding, or is not located in a central urban center. Your organization can have a positive impact on homeless children through a simpler outreach-based model. Benefits of an Arts Outreach Program Creative self-expression through the arts Positive learning experiences A stable and safe environment Time away from stressful shelter life Possible parent and child interaction Flexibility in programming Less cost for overhead and materials Transportation concerns are minimized An Outreach-based arts program can take on many forms: 1) An art educator can visit a shelter on a weekly/monthly basis. The educator brings all materials for the project in a large box. Students create simple projects that can be completed in an hour with basic materials (glue, scissors, construction paper, markers, etc.). The children take home their project at the end of the day. Basic homework tutoring is provided. 2) A monthly art outreach may involve parents and siblings of school age children in the art activities. Snacks or pizza can be provided by the museum for a time of family fun and creativity. 3) The shelter may provide a locked arts cabinet where the educator can store materials. Complex projects can be continued over several art sessions with more advanced materials. Extra academic resources (calculators, dictionary, workbooks, etc.) can be incorporated into the tutoring part of the program. 4) A small-scale daily program can operate if the shelter provides a room available on a regular basis. The room will need storage space and a sink. Close proximity to restrooms and an outdoor play area are also important.
4 Starting a Shelter Outreach Program Logistics An outreach program involves less logistical concerns. You may find that a simple phone call to an area shelter will begin a successful partnership that can last for years. Be sure to review the online toolkit's Logistics and Building Bridges section for detailed information on developing a partnership with area shelters. Transportation By bringing the art to the students, transportation and pick-up issues are minimized. Students should already be at the shelter when the educator arrives. In some cases, an organization may choose to conduct the program in the evenings or on the weekend. Staff and Organization Educators should have previous experience with at-risk youth. Limited support means that the educator should exercise excellent classroom management and an ability to handle crises situations calmly and appropriately. A meeting between organization and shelter staff should cover: Shelter and program needs Number and ages of children at shelter Program times Facility overview (bathrooms, playground, etc.) Space and storage access Pick-up procedures Emergency procedures Once the program has begun, changes can be made based on program needs, available resources, and program growth. This is an excellent opportunity to build trust between shelters and your non-profit organization.
5 A Daily ArtREACH Program A Strong Partnership Launching a full daily arts program at a permanent location requires a strong partnership between your organization, the shelters, the site location, and the school district. Both challenging and rewarding, the ArtREACH program can reach hundreds of homeless children in your community and make a lasting positive impact on needy families. Many issues will arise during the course of the school year which will require full cooperation between all ArtREACH partners. Regular meetings, constant communication, and a positive attitude contribute to the overall success of your program. Be sure to review all sections in the ArtREACH Online Toolkit's A Community Partnership section to learn how to develop a successful interagency partnership. Transportation Resolving transportation issues for homeless families removes an economic barrier for homeless students. Partnering with the school s homeless education liaison will ameliorate the transportation process. Work with the homeless liaison to coordinate transportation services for these students. Shelters may be able to help with transportation concerns. Larger shelters may provide limited van service to shelter clients, or housing ArtREACH at a shelter can mitigate transportation issues. Students may be able to walk to the program. However, evaluate the safety of the surrounding area if children will be walking to and from the program. Young children, especially, are vulnerable to neighborhood dangers such as busy streets and child predators. Transportation and ArtREACH Many homeless families have limited access to transportation. Hardships may result from: Use of public transportation Poorly maintained vehicles Reliance on friends/neighbors/relatives Walking in dangerous neighborhoods Bad weather Public transportation break-downs Missing a bus transfer Working late hours and unexpected family emergencies Reliance on shelter transportation
6 When creating your program, it is imperative that the program is housed within a few miles of the shelter(s) it serves if the arts program is not located within the shelter itself. Depending on your district, public transportation may be reliable with many routes or it may be non-existent or consistently unreliable. The McKinney-Vento Act (read more online under Homelessness), requires school districts to provide school bus transportation for homeless children to guarantee them equal access to education and schools, and when applicable, after-school programs. By contacting the local Homeless Education liaison, you can determine what steps are necessary to arrange for students to be picked up from school and dropped off at your site within certain guidelines. Parents or shelters are responsible for pick-up from your program. While ArtREACH has not experimented with providing its own van services because of the complex logistics and costs involved, this can be another viable option depending on your own organization s own resources and the scope and size of your program. Working with Multiple Shelters A large site will have the capacity to serve multiple shelters in the community. Even if ArtREACH is located in one central shelter, students living in neighboring shelters can possibly attend. Regular meetings between partners and participating shelters will help with organization and logistical issues that may occur. The program coordinator should keep in regular contact with case managers. A good rapport between the case managers and the program coordinator will help greatly if behavioral issues or other concerns occur with a student. Experienced case managers can have a special insight into each individual family s situation and may be able to provide additional services to address client s needs. Families in transition will often move from one shelter to another over the course of the year. Partners will have to decide if students that have moved away from the shelter can continue attending the after school program. In many cases, your program may be the only form of free childcare available to a family, and ensuring that a student can continue attending the length of the school year regardless of a change in residence can help a family achieve financial stability.
7 A Daily Schedule An ArtREACH daily schedule should incorporate the following components: Sign-in A staff member should greet students as they arrive at the site and record attendance each day. Class lists should be available to all teachers. The list might have to be updated weekly due to the high flux of students entering and leaving the program. A notebook with student information, allergies, and emergency contact numbers should be readily accessible by staff for emergency situations. The coordinator should also have a list of all agencies providing transportation for students. Snack Students will arrive at your site hungry. All homeless students are automatically eligible for free meals at school, but since all children like an afternoon snack, it is important to provide one. Some may have not eaten well for a few days, some may have skipped a meal or are dependent on shelter meals. Providing a healthy snack will help with issues that arise because of hunger. The registration packet should have a section for allergies and food restrictions. Always have a few alternative snacks for students with allergies. It is a good rule of thumb to avoid any foods with a high instance of allergies (peanut butter, seafood, etc.) or foods with a high sugar or caffeine content (candy, cookies, sugary punch, etc.). Snack time is also a time for students to socialize. Have students sit in designated seats for snack. Carefully monitor student conversations and actions during snack to avoid any behavior issues that may occur because of namecalling or teasing. Homeless students do not enjoy the privilege of strengthening friendships outside of school. ArtREACH provides an opportunity for them to develop relationships with new friends, and students often use snack time to solidify these friendships. Recess Students have been in a classroom all day. Recess is time for them to unwind, preferably outside in a safe playground situation. Although recess might be more effective when children first arrive at your program, recess may have to occur at a later time because of weather, location of playground equipment, the number of students, or other logistical reasons. Rainy day activities (coloring, board games, etc.) should always be available. It is good for each classroom to have a variety of rainy day activities stored nearby for times when students finish activities early, for emergency situations, or as a class reward for excellent behavior.
8 Bathroom breaks Ideally, a single person bathroom should be located within the classroom. This eliminates schedule disruptions because of bathroom breaks and lack of supervision in the bathrooms. When bathrooms are located outside the classroom, teachers should designate a part of their classroom time to a bathroom break. Depending on the number of children in each classroom, this may not be a viable possibility. It is not advisable to send students unsupervised, whether alone or with a partner, to the bathroom. Your program will have to seriously consider how to approach bathroom breaks safely and quickly. Classes Class blocks should be between minutes, with activities broken down into 20 minute mini-blocks. Students should be broken down into groups (based on age) which rotate between classrooms. ArtREACH classes provided could be fine arts, homework, performing arts, musical movement, dance, computer skills, theater, etc. At Young at Art, ArtREACH is divided into three class blocks fine arts, performing arts, and academics. Although the coordinator develops the arts curriculum, often the arts educator incorporates his/her expertise in the classroom (ex. animation, world music, etc.). Computer skills are taught weekly. Sign-out Because of the greater instances of domestic violence and custody issues, a highly structured pick-up procedure is necessary to be sure children go home with the proper guardian. A staff member needs to greet each adult and double check his/her name and identification against the child s pick-up forms. When an unknown adult comes to pick up a child, the staff member needs to contact the coordinator and the child s parent to confirm that the authorized person is picking up the child. The child should not leave class until the adult has been authorized to pick up the child. SAMPLE SCHEDULE FOR THREE GROUPS: 2:00-2:30 Drop-off and snack 2:30-3:00 Recess and bathroom breaks (by class) 3:00-4:00 BLOCK I (Art, Music, Academics) 4:00-5:00 BLOCK II (Art, Music, Academics) 5:00-6:00 BLOCK III (Art, Music, Academics) 5:30-6:00 Pick-up ArtREACH was created and developed by the Young At Art Children s Museum in collaboration with Broward County Schools All Rights Reserved
10 ArtREACH Training Hiring Education Staff for ArtREACH When hiring staff for the ArtREACH program, it is imperative that educators are flexible, patient and open-minded. A great artist does not necessarily make a great art teacher. A teacher s attitude determines his/her success in the classroom. The most successful ArtREACH educators are those who present the curriculum in a fun manner while demonstrating a genuine concern for the students and possess excellent classroom management skills. Successful ArtREACH educators often have previous experience with at-risk youth, have teaching experience with the applicable age group, and are comfortable with change and spontaneity. Individuals who exhibit prejudice or severe apprehension towards homeless children during the interview do not belong in ArtREACH. A successful ArtREACH educator has minimal discipline problems in their classroom and is confident handling smaller incidents. Suggested Training for ArtREACH Educators The more tools an educator has, the more comfortable they will feel in the classroom setting. Because ArtREACH deals with a challenging student population, it is important to provide staff with the information they need to succeed in the program. Training should include workshops on: Diversity Mental health/emotional health issues How to recognize and report child abuse and neglect Special needs (especially ADD/ADHD and learning disabilities) Positive reinforcement How to deal with chronic absenteeism and illiteracy Addressing behavior Issues and student needs Classroom management Interaction with parents in transition Implementing Curriculum When implementing curriculum, it is important that the educator exhibit: Flexibility and variation in the classroom Patience The ability to address students needs (illiteracy, improper use of materials, short attention span, low frustration tolerance) Keeping the students actively engaged at all times is imperative, especially in the after school setting. Students have already spent an entire day at school, and the extended day at ArtREACH can often contribute to poor behavior due to fatigue, hunger, or even boredom. Each ArtREACH teacher should have several filler activities that can easily fill in five to fifteen minutes of time (ex. freeze dance, theater games, puppet play, free draw time, journal writing, indoor recess, etc.)
11 Classroom Management Different educators approach classroom management from a variety of styles. Teachers might be strict, flexible, loud, quiet, monotone, excitable, and everything in between. It is important that the supervisor discuss uniform ways to deal with specific situations, while allowing educators to manage the class in their own style. However, with at-risk student populations, a higher level of structure is necessary to avoid behavior problems from escalating into severe incidents (physical altercations, students leaving the classroom, verbal altercation, etc.). Simple ways to avoid behavioral problems: Post classroom rules and discuss with the students Have known consequences for infractions of the rules Use positive reinforcement as often as possible. (Students want attention. It is better to give them your attention for positive behavior rather than negative.) Separate disruptive students Engage students to be helpers in the classroom Reward with stickers or a treasure box Giving praise for simple tasks well-done Take a student aside and spend 5 minutes asking how their day was Be an ACTIVE and OBSERVANT teacher Walk around the classroom NEVER leave students unsupervised Display student work around the classroom Work together with parents/case managers to address a student s needs Always display respect for students, regardless of their behavior Have students express their frustration in a journal Many times, ArtREACH students may come to the program frustrated with something that happened at school, at the shelter, with their peers, on the bus, etc. Their frustration translates into poor behavior in the classroom. Sometimes, that extra five minutes to talk to them about what happened may prevent behavioral problems. A complete disciplinary procedure should be followed to address issues that do not improve or to address severe incidents. An example of a disciplinary procedure is as follows: Time-out Time-out in supervisor office and note to parent Parent/Student conference Parent/Student/Case Manager conference 3-Day suspension from program 5-Day suspension from program Expulsion from program The procedure can change according to your program s needs and according to the severity of incident and the age of the child. ArtREACH is a rewarding and exciting program. Educators have an opportunity to make a lifechanging difference in a homeless child s life.
12 Art Educator Description Position: Art Educator Department: Education Supervisor: Director of Education Mission of [Your Organization] [Mission] Position Summary: This position is responsible for planning and implementing after school art classes for children in homeless and transitional shelter program, as well as workshops and field trips. Must manage children in a positive, enthusiastic manner. This position also implements special projects, whether grant-related or for community awareness, and helps develop curriculum and activities for classes and exhibits. Job Responsibilities: Teach visual art and/or performing arts classes and camps Implement syllabus for classes Create examples and research artists and artistic styles used as teaching tools for classes, school and community outreach, exhibits and special workshops as needed Maintain assigned studio, doing inventory, restocking supplies and submitting supply requests Knowledge, Skills and Abilities Required: BA in Art, Art Education, or the Performing Arts (Music/Theater) highly desirable Exceptional creativity and organizational skills Experience in presenting material to young audiences Skills in dealing with parents and young children Strong communication skills Experience developing and implementing curriculum Strong classroom management skills Team player with a can-do attitude
13 Teacher Assistant Description Position: Teacher Assistant Department: Education Supervisor: Program Coordinator Mission of [Your Organization] [Mission] Position Summary: This position includes the responsibilities of assisting program teachers in the classroom and off-site activities, supervising sign-in/sign-out procedures, and teaching classes as a substitute during teacher absences. Job Responsibilities: Assisting art teachers in the classroom and off-site activities (ex. field trips), including bathroom breaks, class supervision, art projects, recess, and snack Logging student Sign In/Sign Out accurately Aiding in the transitions between class periods Acting as a substitute teacher when there is a teacher absence Greeting buses and students at drop-off and greeting parents during pick-up Aiding in the administration of Pretests and Posttests Assisting in recording inventory and filing supply requests Dealing one-on-one with parents for minor paper requests at pick-up Knowledge, Skills and Abilities Required: Classroom/childcare experience Flexible Team Player with a positive can-do attitude Excellent communication skills in dealing with parents and children Professionalism Experience with At-Risk or Special needs children a plus
14 Curriculum Creating an Arts Curriculum for the At-Risk Student When designing curriculum for at-risk youths, several considerations need to be made in regard to their specific needs. Educators will find similar challenges between teaching students below the poverty line and teaching homeless children. Students may exhibit negative behavior for a variety of reasons: Stress Family may be in crisis Current or past physical/emotional/sexual abuse Feelings of abandonment and apathy Depression and mental/emotional health issues Malnourishment and hunger Lack of sleep Sickness or vision problems Frustration with academics and lack of concentration Instability of shelter life Homeless students can exhibit a broad array of challenges, from higher instances of ADD/ADHD and emotional outbursts, to severe withdrawal and depressive symptoms. Many homeless students have been exposed to hardships beyond their maturity level. A child may have seen his father abuse his mother or siblings, a teen might steal so his little brother can eat, a young girl might feel responsible for her mother s addictions, or a kindergartner may physically harm other students. For these reasons, developing a curriculum that addresses these needs and provides a means of self-expression and a respite from daily stresses is key to a student s success. Learn more about education and homeless youths with these *resources: National Association for Educating Homeless Children and Youths American Art Therapy Association Child Abuse Learning Center National Center for Homeless Education Homeless Students by Cynthia Crosson Tower and Donna White National Education Association Publication *NOTE: Young at Art is not responsible for content on external links.
15 ArtREACH Arts Curriculum Overview The ArtREACH Curriculum was developed to meet these goals: To develop arts enrichment activities which promote self-expression and a feeling of accomplishment in at-risk youth To encourage completion of projects through self-contained month-long curriculum units made up of many two or three day projects To celebrate each student s cultural heritage by incorporating projects which explore family roots and various world cultures To promote an interdisciplinary approach to arts learning through a combination of visual and performing arts activities To encourage a green approach to art-making by incorporating recycled art projects in the regular curriculum and to encourage creativity regardless of available resources ArtREACH SUBJECT OVERVIEW The ArtREACH Curriculum Guide follows a nine-month schedule. Each project can take between one to four days, depending on the educator, classroom dynamics, and classroom time allowances. You can use these themes as a springboard for exciting arts projects. Specific projects can be found from the following *online resources: Lessons Plans Page.com Multicultural Music Plans and Resources Art Basics home.ipoline.com/~legends/insatiable/artbasics/html/artbasics.html Can Teach *NOTE: Young At Art is not responsible for content on external links.
16 ArtREACH Curriculum Topic Overview You can use these thematic topics in the visual and performing arts as a springboard to a year of fun and creativity. Back to the Basics Overview: Students learn and understand the basic elements of art, including the elements of design, creating portraits and landscapes, color theory and the color wheel, value, line, shape, harmony, form, space, rhythm, proportion, etc. In the performing arts, students learn the basics of music theory, rhythm, instrument families, etc., through an exciting month of musical movement. Asian Arts Overview: Students learn about the artistic styles and artists of the Far East and acquire skills to create 2D, 3D, and mixed media pieces. In the performing arts segment, students imitate Chinese theatrical styles, learn about music scales of Asian cultures, and design their own Japanese flower gardens. Art of the New World Overview: Students learn about the indigenous cultures of the New World, including Native American cultures and ancient Latin American cultures. Through anthropological studies of the cultures of the New World, students learn to express contemporary culture in mixed media, sculpture, and 2D art, using the techniques of the ancient cultures of the New World. Native American oral tradition is explored in the performing arts class, with projects such as creating a Recycled Art Totem Pole, Kachina Dolls, and Buffalo Drums. Urban Arts Overview: Students learn about the art forms created in contemporary urban society and create unique works of self-expression by creating eco-friendly reverse graffiti, a public art proposal, and creating a city skyline relief. In the performing arts class, students learn about the origins of jazz and hip hop from a historical context and build confidence through theater improvisation games. The Oceanic Arts Overview: Students learn about the Oceanic Arts in terms of culture and environment, and successfully employ Oceanic Art techniques in works such as an aboriginal X-Ray painting, an Australia Great Barrier Reef Watercolor, Petroglyphs, and Moai Self-Portraits. Oceanic Geography in the performing arts class includes creating a sample brochure and acting out a Tour of Australia, making didgeridoos, and playing games using Australian vocabulary. Art of the African Diaspora Overview: Students will learn the historical and cultural background of art of the African Diaspora. Using this knowledge, students will create original artwork using techniques and styles of the artists and cultures learned, including Egyptian Tomb Drawings, Kente Cloths, Haitian Metal Art, and a Mixed Media Jazz Collage. Projects such as a Charcoal Family Tree Drawing and Contemporary Hieroglyphs encourage the students to explore and share their own culture. In music class students learn about different African dance styles, such as Afropop and Highlife, and learn how to create their own positive raps. A theater exploration of the traditional stories of the African Griot further rounds out this rich cultural unit. Nature and Art Overview: Students will learn how the natural world influences art and are encouraged to greater appreciate nature through the creative process with visual art projects such as a Monet-Inspired Landscape, Japanese Ink Painting, and Georgia O Keefe Watercolor. In performing arts, students imitate a jungle environment using their voices as instruments, use movement to act out a thunderstorm, and create theater masks based on the ecosystem.
17 Pop Art Overview: Students will learn about the artists and movements behind the Pop Art movement and will create their own Pop-inspired works in drawing, painting, mixed media, and sculpture. Some artists covered are Wayne Theibaud, Keith Haring, and Jim Dine. In the performing arts, students learn about Mel Blanc s contribution to cartoon history, experiment with Foley sound, and work on designing their own clothing brands. Artistic Styles of the Masters Overview: Students will learn about major periods in art history and contemporary art and will create original works in the styles of each period. Some topics covered include the Romanesque Period, contemporary Japanese Pop Art, Leonardo da Vinci, Picasso, pointillism, Pop Art, Marcel Duchamp, and the Highwaymen. Using theater improvisation, students will create their own Masterpiece Theater to explore famous art works, play a word game based on Shakespeare, and will play a game based on Jules Verne s Around the World in 80 Days.
18 Evaluation Evaluating the ArtREACH program is important for a variety of reasons: Creating a measurable demonstration of learning Collecting quantitative data Evaluating staff Providing objective proof of effectiveness for grant purposes Learning what families and students think about the program Evaluating what the students are learning ArtREACH collects quantitative data through the administration of academic reading evaluations, art skills tests, and student/parent program evaluations. Academic Testing The Young At Art ArtREACH program works in partnership with the Broward County School District to evaluate the students academic progress throughout the year. Certified school board staff administers an assessment such as the WRAT (Wide-Range Achievement Test) pretest and posttest to students regularly attending the program a minimum of three months. Requirements may differ depending on your own region. Academic testing is important in generally determining the overall effectiveness of the academic tutoring being offered in the after school program. These tests can provide quantitative information required by many grant programs targeted at improving academic performance in at-risk youth. The school district partners involved in your after school program can help determine which tests are appropriate given the student population, region, and program requirements. Art Testing Developing an objective Art Skills Pre-test and Post-test can be difficult considering the arts inherent subjectivity. There are several methods of evaluating a child s progress in the arts. ArtREACH has developed a simple Art Pre-test/Post-test, administered when the child begins ArtREACH and then again once a child has been in the program 4-6 months. The Art Pre-test/Post-test has been simplified from a text-based multiple choice test into a picture-based test. This was changed largely due to the younger age of the students and to the limited reading skills of some ArtREACH students. The ArtREACH Pre-test/Post-test provides both multiple-choice and open-ended questions which test on basic art concepts, art history, and vocabulary. The test covers basic color theory, portraits, landscapes, and elements of design, among other questions. Students have improved if they score better on the posttest. Sample Questions Include: 1) Circle the Geometric Shape. 2) Draw a landscape. 3) Draw a portrait. 4) Circle the still life. 5) Use a primary color to color the ball.