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Arts for Learning at Summer Advantage 

Inspiring Scholars

IPS #103

June 19th - July 13th 2018

Program Summary

Arts for Learning partnered with Summer Advantage at IPS #103 to provide a supplemental enrichment program to prevent summer learning loss.

Inspiring Scholars was a four week academic and cultural enrichment program. Every Monday through Thursday afternoon, Arts for Learning teaching artists were assigned different classrooms at Summer Advantage. Every morning the students in the program studied math, writing, and reading through Summer Advantage teachers and assistants. In the afternoon, the students participated in the enrichment delivered by the Arts for Learning teaching artists. With the help of Summer Advantage teaching assistants, the Arts for Learning teaching artists implemented their unique collaborative lessons through hip-hop, African dance, videography, drumming, and more.

Our Partnerships

In order to provide such a stimulating learning experience for IPS #103, Arts for Learning partnered with Summer Advantage. Their mission is to harness the power of summer learning to raise the educational achievement of all students. Through our partnership, approximately 95 second through sixth grade students attended this program aimed to prevent summer learning loss for young students.

The Collaborative and Creative Team

Arts for Learning had a total of 14 teaching artists in the summer of 2018. Significant about the program this year was that the teaching artists collaborated in pairs to create lesson plans that would unify their unique art forms.  Several teaching artists returned once again to the summer program. These artists included: Lawrence Clark (Drumming), Ronne Stone (African Dance), Theon Lee (Hip Hop), Beverly Roche(Pantomime/ Theater), Shawn Whistler (Digital Art/ Ballroom Dance), Michael Mirable (Printmaking), and Tyler May (Film, Photography). Arts for Learning also welcomed new artists to the summer program. These artists included: Giselle Trujillo (Visual Art), Joshua Short (Hip Hop), Mat Panfil (Collage), Dianna Davis (Visual Music), and Kris Hurst (Visual Art). The artists, both returning and new, were able to bring two art forms together, that may have been complete opposites, to engage and stimulate the interest in the arts within 95 students.

The Creative & Learning Process

Throughout the four-week program, students ranging from second through sixth grade experienced the following types of collaborative art:


2nd Grade A & B: Drumming, Visual Music, Self Portraits, Pantomine, Print Making, Music Composition

3rd Grade A, B, C: African Dance, Visual Arts, Hip Hop, Ballroom Dance, Abstract Art, Theatre, Collage

4th Grade A & B: Hip Hop, African Dance, Drumming, Visual Music, African Drumming 

5th Grade: Collage, Film/Photography, Print Making, Digital Art

6th Grade: Digital Art, Collage, Film/Photography, Printmaking

 Each Monday the scholars were introduced two new artists and their form of art. Since the program's main focus this year was being able to provide collaboration between two art forms, the students were able to working with two teaching artists a day. Being provided with neighboring classrooms,  the teaching artists were able to easily transition the scholars from one classroom to the other.

The Collaborative Lesson Plans

Lawrence Clark and Dianna Davis 

"The Big Listen"

Artistic Focus:

Percussion Improvisation and Learning Patterns

The Big Idea: 

Music is inherent in all people.

Ronne Stone and Giselle Trujillo

"Feel Liberia"

Artistic Focus:

Using recyclable material and teaching a traditional West African Dance/Song

The Big Idea:

Students are able use materials and movement to create any environment.

Theon Lee and Joshua Short


Artistic Focus:

Teaching different elements and history of Hip Hop for students to create their own interpretation 

The Big Idea:

Culture is able to build and maintain community through the art of music and expression through music.

Ronne Stone and Jalynn Simmons

"African Dance and Drum Banataba"

Artistic Focus:

Self-expression through active engagement in group drumming and dance activities 

The Big Idea:

Drumming and dancing is inseparable in African culture through the communication of both movement and rhythm.

Tyler May and Michael Mirable

"Putting Characters in Motion"

Artistic Focus: 

Photography/ Storytelling and Printmaking

The Big Idea:

Being able to tell a story through different forms of visual representation

Shawn Whistler and Kris Hurst

"Ballroom Dance and Abstract Art"

Artistic Focus: 

Using natural objects and/or dance steps in different sequences to create art

The Big Idea:

To identify, create, and revise patterns found in both dance and art.

Michael Mirable and Eric Salazar

"The Royal Ceremony"

Aristic Focus:

Printmaking and Composing Music

The Big Idea:

Students can tap into their inner creativity to express a story by engaging in multi-sensory story telling.

Beverly Roche and Matt Panfill

"Visual Storytelling Using Fables"

Artistic Focus:

Storytelling through physical theatre and collage making

The Big Idea:

Different forms of structure help the artists understand concepts that lead to proper execution in their art form 

The Outcome of Collaboration

The ability for Arts for Learning teaching artists to come together from different backgrounds of art forms and collaborate in putting together their art gave the students an opportunity to make connections. The scholars were able to see how the art they were learning came together and intertwined. By the end of the four day week, the students were able to conclude with a "Perform and Inform" to combine both art forms and show off their newly learned techniques. Through “Perform and Inform” the students were given the chance to teach their peers about the art form they had been exposed to, the techniques that came with mastering the art form, and the materials or instruments they used throughout the week. This opportunity not only gave the students initiative, but it also made them more confident in knowledge and more comfortable with their subject.

Closing Thoughts

The partnership between the Arts for Learning and Summer Advantage affected approximately 120 students through the four-week program. Each student in the program was able to experience different forms of art placed in collaboration by the Teaching Artists. The month long program helped scholars stay engaged and active in learning during the summer to prevent learning loss over the summer. It provided them with a fun, safe, and creative environment to explore new unique forms of art. The program not only provided benefit to the students, but it also provided benefits to the teaching artists. The collaboration between artists introduced them to a new form of teaching their art forms. They were able to experience their own art in a new way.


Since the artists were paired with a new class each week, the artists were able to learn and grow within different grade levels. This made it possible for the artists to become comfortable in teaching different grade levels since each classroom brought different challenges and lessons. Without hesitation, the artists were able to adapt to teaching in collaboration and a new grade level easily. The Inspiring Scholars program was able to leave an impact on the participating students. The Summer Advantage program not only provided the scholars with extra instruction on core school subjects like math and reading which enhanced their learning, but also provided the students with an opportunity to explore within the arts. The Arts for Learning gave the scholars a supplemental enrichment program that allowed them to experience how different art forms were able to collaborate together to create a new world of learning art. Students were able to delve into the art world and express themselves.

Written By:

Sandy Rivera

Summer Intern, 2018

Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, Class of 2019

B.S. Elementary Education