Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Blick Art Room Aid: Saving art in our schools!

A couple of weeks ago I told you about the important role art has played in my life, and those around me. Then I made an off-color joke and I confessed to eating an eraser, two things that are the basis of around 99% of my blog posts.

But wait, there's more.

I also mentioned Art Room Aid from Blick Art Materials, a program that helps teachers by enlisting the help of parents, families, friends, and other art advocates to fund art projects to keep art alive and well in their classrooms and in the lives of their students.

With budgets for the arts being cut in our school district at an alarming rate, teachers are often forced to pay for supplies out of their own pockets, or forgo art altogether. I don't know about you, but I don't want my kids – or anyone's kids – to grow up not having art in their curriculum. This concern is multiplied for kids in inner-city schools, who might not have the opportunities to gain exposure to the arts outside of their classroom.

As some great philosopher once said (Or maybe I heard it on Family Guy) "Man does not live by math, science and freshman English 101 alone." Whoever said it it's absolutely true, and why a program like Art Room Aid is so important – and why I'm so excited to be a part of it.

Another reason? I have the opportunity to partner with my sister – who has been a teacher in an inner-city school in the Los Angeles Unified School District for 37 years – to help her see her own project come to fruition with the help of Art Room Aid. (That's right – thirty-seven years. Don't complain about being at your Forever 21 cashier job for two months.)

She's embarking on a project with her 2nd grade class called Creating Young Artists for Upcycling, and we're hoping to get all of her supplies covered. Here's what she has to say about the project:
"The title of our current literacy unit is: 'Let's Create!' We've read some articles and stories about people who have used the process of repurposing materials to create works of art, and so in our classroom discussions, I've asked my students to consider what items and/materials they might utilize from their home environments to create their own works of art.
I'm excited to see what they will produce"
I'm thrilled to be able to help out my sister's class, and to be supporting this project for kids who might not have many opportunities to be exposed to the arts. And you can help if you like – check out our wish list here, and you can donate any amount you can. My sister - and her entire class of budding artists – will greatly appreciate it.

Here's a look at their project and their materials they're requesting:

Blick Art Room Aid is a fantastic way for art educators and parents to share projects and get the word out about much-needed supplies, and a way for communities to support our teachers and our children. You can start your own project (it's free!) or search for other projects to aid by going to the Blick Art Rooom Aid home page.

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I am participating in this project via The Motherhood, who will be donating some funding to our project. This is also a compensated post, but all opinions and off-color remarks are 100% mine. 

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