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20 Innovative Ideas

From the  2015-2016 Champion Creative Alive Children Grant Winners
Principal Supplement: Champion Creatively Alive Children
September/October 2016

Art ‘n Bots

Regency Park Elementary School
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Principal Justin Stephans

Students designed, animated, and wrote scripts for customized robot actors, combining art and technology. The creative leadership team, in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University and Pittsburgh Create Lab, provided professional development on student-directed teaching strategies.

Art of Our Elders Helps Create Future

Santo Niño Regional Catholic School
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Principal Theresa Vaisa

The creative learning team focused on appreciation of the cultural and artistic heritage of the school’s Santa Fe community and provided art-based professional development for faculty.

Artistic Habits of Mind

White County Central Elementary School
Judsonia, Arkansas
Principal Beverly Froud

This school’s creative leadership team increased colleagues’ participation in arts integration via in-depth professional development and teachers’ Habits of Mind to welcome the iterative and messy nature of creative experiences.

Artistic Robots Showcase Creativity and Tech Skills

North Summit Elementary School
Coalville, Utah
Principal Lori O’Connor

In collaboration with the Beverly Taylor Sorenson Arts Learning Program, this school’s arts leadership team merged art, engineering, and technology into a STEAM program, co-teaching with classroom teachers to help students understand how the world works.

Arts Happening

Lusher Charter School
New Orleans, Louisiana
Principal Sheila Nelson

Solving real-world problems, exploring social justice issues, and building empathy were the priorities for this art-integration school, which prides itself on being on the “cutting edge” of instructional best practices.

Beyond Stereotypes—Both Art Cultures Respected

Seligman Elementary School
Seligman, Arizona
Principal Jeff Baker

The creative leadership team brought together the arts from the Hualapai Native American Reservation and the rancher community to build understanding and respect. Their art provides a voice and common ground.

Community Commits to Collaboration

Rawlins Elementary School
Rawlins, Wyoming
Principal Darrin Jennings

This rural, Title I school, located more than two hours from the nearest city, used art partnerships to help overcome its regional isolation. It worked with the Wyoming Arts Council, the University of Wyoming’s Art Mobile, and the Artists Across Wyoming program to mentor teachers in the arts.

Creative Arts School

E.M. Downer Elementary School
San Pablo, California
Principal Marco Gonzales

This school shifted its vision and transformed into a Creative Arts School, reframing its professional development, instructional strategies, and assessment to become arts-integration pioneers in the district.

Creative Confidence

Bullis Charter School
Los Altos, California
Principal Wanny Hersey

In partnership with the Santa Clara County Office of Education and the county’s visual and performing arts director, teachers and students built creative confidence, problem-solving, and innovation skills through art integration.

Curriculum Maps and School Culture

Renaissance Academy Charter School of the Arts
Rochester, New York
Principal Donna Marie Cozine

This school’s creative leadership team infused the arts into every aspect of the curriculum and school culture. The team built units of study and thematic curriculum maps that explicitly show connections between the arts and every content area that is taught— emphasizing common art-based language and the creative processes.

Environment of Inquiry & Art Integration

Bloomfield Elementary School
Skowhegan, Maine
Principal Jean Pillsbury

The creative leadership team developed a three-year plan for building teachers’ creative capacity, coaching colleagues and supporting classroom teachers as they embraced art integration schoolwide.

Expressing Personal Identity

Vansville Elementary School
Beltsville, Maryland
Principal Tom Smith

Building teachers’ creative capacity is this school’s priority. It uses art integration as the teaching strategy to cultivate students’ self-expression, personal identity, and cultural understanding.

Growth Mindset

Blair Dual Language School
Waukesha, Wisconsin
Principal Aida Cruz-Farin

Growing students’ and teachers’ commitment and capacity to persevere and solve problems is a mindset this school embraces. Teachers received professional development on design thinking—urging them to experiment, innovate, collaborate, evaluate, and learn from mistakes.

Longitudinal Study of Transformative Initiatives

Ridgeway Elementary School
Hamilton, Ohio
Principal Kathy Wagonfield

This school participated in the Miami University Art Education Department’s Study of Transformative Initiatives, which is an innovative, preservice teacher-prep program that provided creative coaches for every classroom.

Mindfulness and Literacy Taught Through Art

Massey Street Public School
Brampton, Ontario Principal
Kathy Kozovski

When the Canadian Ministry of Education asked this school to increase literacy skills in its high-risk community of English-language learners, the school chose art integration as the teaching strategy. It helped children become mindful while creating and presenting artwork, resulting in deepened communication skills.

Project-Based Learning Merges Art and Common Core

Coronita Elementary School
Corona, California
Principal Kevin Kazala

The creative leadership team engaged families and teachers in learning how art, creative processes, and Common Core come together through lively project-based learning experiences. Children can borrow “creative kits” from the school’s lending library to create projects at home.

Quest for Quality Questioning

Arnold Elementary School
Arnold, Maryland
Principal Shauna Kauffman

Already involved in art integration, this school increased the rigor in its art-rich classrooms with deeper thinking and more complex creations. Focusing on quality questioning, the principal’s walk-throughs engaged students in art-integration inquiry.

Teachers Training Teachers

Savoy Elementary School
Washington, D.C.
Principal Donyale Butler

As one of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities’ first eight Turnaround Arts schools, Savoy has veteran teachers who embraced art integration as a teaching strategy to build literacy and math skills and student engagement. Now they are sharing insights with other district educators.

Technology that Facilitates Creativity and Collaboration

Luther Conant Elementary School
Acton, Massachusetts
Principal Damian Sugre

While technology has permeated life, educators are searching for ways to use it to stimulate creativity and collaborative projects. This school’s creative leadership team provided professional development and team teaching and coaching for more effective integration of art and ed-tech.

Tinker Town—Where Curiosity Drives Curricula

Jackson Primary School
Williamsport, Pennsylvania
Principal Kirk Felix

What if teachers considered their most important role to be “learner”? What if they thought more about good questions than right answers? This school’s creative leadership team served as a catalyst for an authentic model of learning, giving students a voice and choice, and letting curiosity drive the curricula.


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