TAF announces arts education showcase for K-6 educators

LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Support for local educators is the focus of the Arts Education Showcase on Wednesday, May 5 at the Tippecanoe Arts Federation. Arts & cultural organizations will be on-site to share information about their educational programs and services during this two hour event. The Showcase is a program created by the Education Committee of the Lafayette/West Lafayette Cultural Planning Implementation team.

“It’s hard for everyone to see arts education cut so drastically in our community schools. We are here to come together as a community and help,” stated Paige Sharp, Director of Arts Education and Regional Services at Tippecanoe Arts Federation. “We are here to bridge the gap between community arts and educator: to provide resources, build relationships, learn about what educators’ specific needs are, and find ways to address them – together.” According to a 2005 Harris Poll commissioned by Americans for the Arts, 93% of Americans agree the arts are vital to providing a well-rounded education.

Dr. Scott Hanback, Superintendent of Tippecanoe School Corporation encourages educators to attend. “The arts are very important, and this is a great opportunity for teachers to find valuable art educational resources for the classroom.”

Teachers who attend have the opportunity to win free a arts performance for their school or classroom.

The school with the highest percentage of teachers in attendance will win a free convocation for their school during the 2010/2011 academic year. Jefferson High School Varsity Singers will perform for the winning school. The Tippecanoe Arts Federation will coordinate with the school to integrate this exciting American arts performance into general curricula. Jefferson Varsity Singers have placed top in state championships for the past thirteen years and serve as outstanding role models for elementary students.

There will also be a drawing for a free Purdue Convocation Matinee performance for one classroom (also to be scheduled for the 2010/2011 academic year).

Arts and cultural organizations will provide educators with information and access to their educational programs and resources, particularly those that are free, low cost, and can be transported to schools. Resources presented will include classroom materials, outreach programs, lesson plans, guides, and tour information, etc. An example of a free program available to the educators is Art Smart Indiana produced by the Art Museum of Greater Lafayette. Art Smart Indiana is a visual tool used to teach students about Indiana’s cultural history, 1800 – present day, while building visual thinking skills and art appreciation.

The Showcase event will also provide K-6 educators the opportunity to weigh in on changes to the Arts Education and Activity Resource Guide that would make it more beneficial to the integration of arts in the classroom. The Tippecanoe Arts Federation offers the free guide for download on their website, www.tippecanoearts.org (resources/for educators). The free guide has nearly 100 listings for musical, visual, literary, theatrical, dance, cultural and historical organizations, many of which offer educational programs.

Hosted by the Tippecanoe Arts Federation in the Wells Community Cultural Center located at 638 North Street, Lafayette, arts and cultural organizations interested in participating should contact Paige Sharp at 423-2787 or rsd@tippecanoearts.org by April 19, 2010.

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