Miguel was an extremely bright third-grader, and like many, lacked self-confidence. He was hesitant to try new things in class and did not always follow his teacher’s instructions. And then Miguel’s class participated in an artist residency provided by Young Audiences of Northern California. Young Audiences partnered Susan, a professional mural artist, with Miguel’s third grade teacher to conduct several hands-on lessons in his classroom. Susan encouraged students to use their imaginations to compose underwater scenes on ceramic tiles and to paint their compositions with colorful glazes. Miguel responded—he became engaged and his confidence blossomed. His teacher noticed he was more enthusiastic in class and other areas of his academic performance improved:
“My students were asked by the artist to draw a specific pattern, and I noticed Miguel just wasn’t following directions, but I didn’t say anything. The teaching artist encouraged Miguel to embrace his own creativity. I saw at that moment that sometimes you have to let the child find their own voice, to find their own way. To give this boy an opportunity to unleash his creativity gave him confidence. He is so happy and engaged.”
Art in the classroom gives children the tools to make meaning out of their experiences and enables them to grow. Now, Miguel participates more in class and is interested in trying new things.
Young Audiences transforms children (like Miguel) and by extension their communities. Each year Young Audiences, with the support of people like you, provides children with opportunities to experience an art form demonstrated by a professional artist; understand an art form and its history and culture; create the art form and connect their learning to other areas of study and to their lives and world. Many children that engage with professional artists from Young Audiences experience art for the first time. Like Miguel, many of them transform into better students, engage more with other children and teachers, and improve in other academic subjects.
As we observe our 60th Anniversary of creating art experiences that inspire young people, expand learning, and enliven communities, we rely on your support to help us achieve our mission.