Notes From the Executive Director
Arts Education Holds Key to Jumpstarting the Economy
During challenging economic times, many school systems are making deep cuts to arts programming. According to 1,500 of America's CEOs, creativity is the most necessary quality for leadership, with integrity and global thinking reported as among the top three ingredients for success. And, of course, it's arts in education that advances the mastery of creativity better than any other subject.
Yet it is in a difficult economy that students need arts education more than ever before, since it is through innovative and dynamic skills mastered through arts education that students learn to effectively navigate and advance in today's fast-paced, information-based workplace.
There is increasing consensus around the fact that arts education fosters the kind of 21st Century learning skills that are critical to being competitive in the job market - skills such as creativity, innovation, adaptability, critical thinking, ability to synthesize information and problem solve as well as to collaborate with others.
A senior manager at IBM reported that he found these CEO ratings surprising, remarking that "it is very interesting that coming off the worst economic conditions they'd ever seen, [CEOs] didn't fall back on management discipline, existing best practices, rigor, or operations. In fact, they [did] just the opposite." Most arts educators would not surprised at all by a connection between a vibrant economy, creativity and arts in education.
Arts educators have known all along that the skills mastered through arts education can be applied in numerous settings, including business, to positive effect.
Of course arts education is important for its own sake, allowing students to express what they might not otherwise express and providing the key to the greatest fortune of all, a connection to others. But at a time when so many are grappling with approaches to ensuring economic stability, why not point out that arts education is part of the answer.
|Partnership for 21st Century Skills Releases Map for the Arts|
The 21st Century Skills Map for the Arts demonstrates how the three Rs and four Cs (critical thinking and problem solving, communication, collaboration and creativity and innovation) can be fused within arts curriculum.
The map was released at a Capitol Hill Briefing by representatives from P21, the American Alliance for Theatre & Education, the Educational Theatre Association, the National Art Education Association, MENC: The National Association for Music Education, the National Dance Association, and the National Dance Education Organization.
Ford's Theatre holds a unique place in United States history and
has enthralled millions of visitors since its reopening in 1968. Ford's Theatre
is committed to engaging education professionals in developing meaningful and
useful tools and skills that enhance teaching history and leadership to middle
and high school students using theatre, speech and storytelling.
This summer, for the third year, Ford's Theatre partnered
with Collaborative members Tudor Place Historic House and Garden and President
Lincoln's Cottage (as well as the National Park Service) to offer the Civil
War Washington Teacher Fellows summer institute. In two
week-long session, more than 40 teachers from the D.C. metropolitan area
and across the country participated in a series of on-site seminars to learn
about using performance, place and objects to teach about Abraham
Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, and Washington during the Civil War. The program
is free to teachers from DC Public and Public Charter Schools.
According to Sarah Jencks, Director of Education at
Ford's (and DC Collaborative board member),
the goals are for teachers to leave with familiarity of an array
of virtual tours; the oratory skills to get their students on their feet
performing speeches by Lincoln and Douglass; comfort taking students on content-driven
experiential learning adventures; and excitement about using classroom drama to
help historic characters come alive! For more information, click here!
Dorothy McSweenyDorothy McSweeny
Dorothy McSweeny, one of the DC Collaborative's founders, is a dedicated board member who brings a creative approach and daily inspiration to our work. In addition to serving on our board, she is also the Chair Emeritus of the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and is currently the chair of the MidAtlantic Arts Foundation board of directors. Mrs. McSweeny was named Washingtonian of the Year and received the Mayor's Arts Award for Lifetime Achievement as well as numerous other awards recognizing her leadership and support of the arts. She is active as founder, officer, and trustee of many organizations including The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, National Symphony Orchestra, The Washington Ballet, National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, the Federal City Council, DC Chamber of Commerce, National Museum of the American Indian, National Museum of Women in the Arts, and Washington Episcopal School. Mrs. McSweeny was the Lyndon Johnson Presidential Oral Historian at the White House and Special Assistant to Speaker of the House. We are grateful to Dorothy, and all our board members, for their work to further our mission, help the organization grow, and serve our members and the DC Public and Charter Public Schools.
Middle School Afterschool PilotThe District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) Office of Out-of-School Time (OST) is piloting a structure that will support high-quality programming and increased participation from middle school students. This model will reprogram funds traditionally used to support a full-time afterschool coordinator at one pilot school and instead support a variety of specialized arts providers and the appropriate materials and equipment that will drive performance-based learning and extend arts offerings from the school day into the afterschool program. Afterschool activities will offer specialized programming such as choir, theater, voice, and film. The session schedule for each activity's programming will depend on interest, a vetted curriculum guide with clear goals, and program cost. For more information, please contact the DC Collaborative, a partner on this pilot.
|Taking Flight With the DC Collaborative|
The DC Collaborative has launched a Butterfly Initiative: Taking Flight. As part of Taking Flight, butterfly sculptures decorated by DC public school students will be placed on 14th Street establishments in time for August 8th's downtown Dog Days and Open Source Day celebration. A variety of opportunities exist to sponsor a butterfly. Taking Flight supports the DC Collaborative; enriches artistic collaboration; increases visibility of downtown's U/14th Street neighborhood; celebrates community; and gives voice to student expression. All butterflies that are not acquired through the Soaring Sponsorship/Host Opportunity will be auctioned. The butterfly image was chosen because it symbolizes a soaring vision for our community - downtown revitalization, collaboration in the arts, and students being able to "take flight" through artistic expression.
|Donate Now |
Make the DC Collaborative a part of your giving plan this year! Help us bring quality arts and humanities education to all DC public and chartered public schools. Your donation can provide tickets and transportation through the Arts for Every Student program (currently serving nearly 30,000 students in the District), provide teacher registration fees for Professional Development workshops, or provide for support for arts integrated work with schools as part of the Arts Education Initiative.
The DC Collaborative is pleased to announce the addition of three new member organizations to the Collaborative: The National Geographic Museum, Lincoln's Cottage, and the American Poetry Museum. The National Geographic Museum offers a wide variety of changing exhibitions that reflect the richness and diversity of our world. Current exhibitions include "Da Vinci-the Genius" and "Design for the Other 90%". Lincoln's Cottage: During the Civil War, President Lincoln and his family resided there from June to November of 1862, 1863, and 1864. The American Poetry Museum is one of the first museums in the world dedicated to collecting, interpreting and presenting American poetry. It is committed to the continuation of poetry as a literary and performance art and the use of poetry as an active tool for education. The DC Collaborative believes all three new member organizations will be great assets in our mission of providing equitable access to the arts and humanities for all DC public and charter school students.
- The Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts
is looking for enthusiastic and experienced Teaching Artists. Teaching artists will be provided with
extensive training and resources to conduct 16-session residencies in local DC,
Maryland, and Virginia preschool and Kindergarten classrooms. Wolf Trap is seeking individuals who
understand how the performing arts are integral in early childhood learning and
are successful in incorporating these strategies into classroom
experiences. If interested, please send
your resume to Mary Henderson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The deadline for applications is August 20, 2010.
- Key Elementary School
seeks a music teacher to .Develop and direct after-school chorus
program for children in K - 2 and 3-5 and direct a spring musical for
children in grades 3-5. To apply, please submit resume and cover letter
to: David Landeryou, Principal Key Elementary School, 5001 Dana Place,
NW, Washington, DC 20016
|For more information on the DC Arts and Humanities Education Collaborative, Please visit our website by clicking here.
|On behalf of the DC Collaborative we look forward to working with you and we hope you have a great summer!
DC Arts and Humanities Education Collaborative
1835 14th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009
p. (202) 204-7750
f. (202) 204-7803