Does your idea of art in school involve making leaf impressions with crayons and white paper? Gluing popsicle sticks together to make picture frames? Our Artists-in-Schools Initiative is here to change all that.
Since 2015, CAC has brought professional teaching artists into schools to support math, science, language, and history curricula. Through interactive, engaging workshops taught by nationally acclaimed theatre artists, performance artists, dancers, poets, Grammy-nominated musicians, African drummers, and Emmy-winning digital music artists, students have unique opportunities to experience new outlets for emotional expression and new pathways for learning.
Through artistic immersion, the program helps foster a personal connection for students to a variety of academic lessons. What does this look like?
- Learning and reinforcing math principles, like fractions, through dance choreography;
- Science and history lessons are investigated with clever raps about topics such as the Revolutionary War and Einstein’s Theory of Relativity;
- Exploring math through music and rhythm; or
- Learning various writing styles and methods through multiple poetry forms.
Creating New Outlets for Emotional Expression
Mental health is taking a more prominent role in our national conversation, especially when it comes to children. Right here in Chatham County, the Chatham Health Alliance tells us that one-third of adults in the county have been diagnosed with depression or anxiety. But more concerning is this: 26.1 % of Chatham middle school students say they’ve seriously though about suicide, 13.6% of them have at some point attempted to take their own lives. That’s 1 in 7 middle school children in our community.
Studies from around the world show that engaging in the arts can help boost confidence, make kids feel more engaged, more resilient. While experts suspect that 50% of the world’s population struggles with mental health issues by the time they’re 40, research shows that art can relieve anxiety, depression, and stress.
The benefits of arts engagement don’t end with lower cortisol levels. Did you know that students involved in the arts are:
- Four times as likely to be recognized for academic achievement;
- Four times more likely to participate in a math or science fair;
- Three times more likely to be elected to class office?
We have an ambitious goal to be in every public school in Chatham County. When we get there, we’ll be the first and only county in the state to do it! You can help us reach that goal by giving today! There are a number of opportunities for sponsorship or individual giving.
Recent Artists-in-Schools Stories
- Poetic Pursuits: Phillip Shabazz at Perry Harrison Elementary
- Movement Matters: Silk Hope School and Gaspard&Dancers
- Sparking Creativity: Blackspace’s Beat Making Lab at Chatham Middle
- Meet This Artist: Dr. Anthony D. Jackson
- Artists-in-Schools 2023-24 Season
- Go See This: Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival featuring Blackspace and Chatham Middle School
- AIS Stories from Last Season (2022/23)
- Phillip Shabazz Brings Poetry to the Pittsboro Elementary Pandas
- Diali Cissokho Introduces a Little Bit of West Africa to Bonlee School
- Black Box Dance Theatre Sets History and Math Lessons to a New Beat at Virginia Cross and Perry Harrison
- Black Box Dance Theatre and Virtual Academy Zoom!
- Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana Spices Things Up at Siler City Elementary and Bennett School
- Diali Cissokho Brings Smiles and Beats to Chatham Charter
- The John Brown Quartet Jazzes Things Up at Moncure School
- Drumming, Dancing, and an Ancient Art Form Flow into Silk Hope