With a grant from the Westchester Community Foundation, ArtsWestchester partnered with the Tarrytown School District, which has been a leader in assisting English-language learners to integrate in the community, on this unique collaboration.
The district received a multi-year federal grant for programs that provide expanded, personalized learning opportunities for students in middle and high school who do not speak English as their first language. Known as Project Exc-EL, or Excellence for English Learners, the program combines evidence-based strategies for classroom teaching with support provided by community partners and agencies. ArtsWestchester is one of those partners.
During the 2015-16 school year, ArtsWestchester brought three residencies in the visual, performing, and literary arts to the district. Artists collaborated with science and math teachers to create a curriculum that meets artistic, academic, and social goals for the art-making activities. Two hundred 8th-grade students participated in the project, which brought English and non-English speaking students to work together.
All students worked with artists to map the school grounds and select sites for art installations. Students also visited area sculpture exhibits to understand three-dimensional work. Students learned skills such as communication, planning, documentation, presentation, writing, and collaboration.
Art and science collaborate to tell a story
Above is the sculpture Symbiosis, depicting two people holding up the world. Below, the teachers, administrators, and funders who made the project possible.
Once they chose the sites, 60 students created the three sculpture installations, which were unvelied June 6 on the Sleepy Hollow Middle School grounds.
To find out more about the project, and see an interactive map, click here: http://shmsscienceart.weebly.com/