Category Archives: New York
Born and raised in Taiwan, Chris Lin is a Queens-based visual artist with over 25 years of teaching experience. He has worked with students of all age groups, newly immigrated Chinese ELL students, and senior citizens. Since 2010, he has been an instructor at the Leroy Neiman Art Center (LNAC). Last month, Chris concluded a series of highly successful Saturday morning visual arts workshops as part of an ESL program for parents and families of elementary school students enrolled at PS 46 in the Bronx. This program was possible through NYCDOE’s “Arts and Family Engagement” grant.
This semester, Arts Horizons is pleased to offer the students of PS 46 a wide variety of arts education programs from AH teaching artists Navida Stein (storytelling), Larry Washington (percussion), Suzi Myers (world dance), Silvana Marquina (dance), and Andy Algire (recorder). We are especially grateful for Principal Jennifer Ade-Alexander, Assistant Principal Roxanna Bello-Sullivan, Assistant Principal Mary Champagne, and all of the faculty for their continued support over the years. We are also eager to continue providing an average of 215 students with music, dance, and theater programming with an average of 10 contact hours per student.
AH Program Coordinator, Kiran Rajagopalan, visited one of Chris’s Saturday morning workshops at PS 46 earlier in February. Let’s take a quick peek!
The primary focus of Chris’s residency was on sculptural traditions from around the world. Over five Saturdays, participants created vejigante masks from Puerto Rico, pottery with Mexican motifs, sculptural pop-up books, and animal sculptures commemorating Chinese New Year. The range of materials that participants worked with included: clay, colored cardstock, glitter, and tempera paints. Chris began each session with a brief 10-minute lecture in English on an artistic discipline and introduced specific vocabulary words. Cindy Cabral (ESL teacher) and Karen Ramirez (site coordinator and librarian) then translated his lecture and instructions into Spanish to ensure that communication to all participants was clear. The residency concluded with a formal exhibition of the artwork displayed in PS 46’s state-of-the-art library and an informal reception for the participants and their invited guests.
Parents busy at work painting their pottery at PS 46.
Feedback from both Karen and the participants has been extremely positive for Chris’s residency. Karen commented that he received “rave reviews” from parents and students, and his workshop “is the best they’ve ever had.” She also revealed that participation started off very small during the first session, but enrollment quickly grew to more than 20 regular participants due to positive word-of-mouth. One parent even went home in the middle of one session to pick up her child to participate in the workshop! Both Chris and Karen are eager to do another family workshop at PS 46, and hopefully this time they can enroll more fathers!
The Arts Horizons 2017 Program Guide is available for schools and communities to browse our diverse array of arts-in-education opportunities.
Contact our experienced staff to find out more information and book your program.
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Noted fashion designer, anthropologist, and recycled materials artist Ms. Veronique “Vickie” Fremont has been an AH teaching artist for over eight years. Fluent in five languages (French, Spanish, English, Portuguese, and Italian), Vickie is a highly effective arts educators for English Language Learners (ELLs). She has just finished an AH in-school visual arts residency at PS 85 in partnership with Fordham University’s Graduate School of Education in the Fordham Heights neighborhood of the Bronx. Ms. Joyce Griffen, another AH teaching artist who has been working with us since 2009, is also currently working with PS 85 students in a storytelling program. Joyce is an accomplished actress, jazz vocalist and director with extensive experience in special education.
Arts Horizons is pleased to enter our second year at PS 85 in partnership with the Fordham Center for Educational Partnerships initiative with Community Schools. This continues a longstanding relationship working with the students and educators at PS 85 that dates back to 2007.
AH’s new program coordinator, Kiran Rajagopalan, visited one of Vickie’s classes earlier in January at PS 85. Let’s visit one of her classes
Vickie’s AH residency was aimed at PS 85’s ELL students primarily in grades 3 and 4. She focused on bookmaking so that students had ample opportunities to practice writing in English. In the picture above, Vickie is holding some examples of “The Book of Diversity” created by her students using recycled materials such as cloth scraps, beads, and yarn. Students were also instructed to draw a self-portrait and write on where they come from and how they are learning English inside the books. This was just one of several books the students made during the residency! Other projects included: “The Book of the Favorite Words,” “Book Accordion,” and “Mobile Book.”
Vickie also used her proficiency in Spanish to great effect, and she conducted her classes in both English and Spanish so that communication was clear for each and every student. Mr. Carlos Torres, a teacher at PS 85, was very appreciative of having an visual arts program for students because it “really makes a difference with academic[s]” as it “engages their creativity and relaxes their minds to learn.” Vickie added that her residencies are designed to encourage students to “discover the connection between the hand and creativity.”
Brooklyn-based visual artist and educator Judy Richardson is currently conducting an AH in-school residency for 3rd and 5th graders at PS 279 in the Canarsie neighborhood of Brooklyn. Associated with AH since 2006, Judy is an experienced teaching artist who has skillfully used a variety of visual art mediums to enrich students, teachers, and administrators at over 25 sites.
Judy and Donovan Nelson, another AH teaching artist, are currently engaged in residencies as part of a year-long arts education program at PS 279. This school is a longtime and regular partner of AH, and this program was started last year with Judy and Donovan. Due to the overwhelming success of their residencies, PS 279’s administration decided to continue the full-year arts curriculum with both AH teaching artists to reach grades K-5.
AH’s new program coordinator, Kiran Rajagopalan, visited one of Judy’s classes earlier in January at PS 279. Let’s take a quick peek inside one of her classes!
Students at work making their dolls
Judy’s AH residency closely aligned with what the students are currently studying in American History. In the picture above, Judy is working with the 3rd graders on making dolls in the likeness of three “Heroines in History” – Rosa Parks, Clara Lemlich, and Betsy Dowdy. Students are taught the basics of sewing including how to properly thread a needle and knot the string to begin or end a series of stitches. They are then given yarn, sequins, cloth scraps, and other materials in which to decorate their dolls. One student commented on how she was “nervous at first to sew because” she was “afraid of needles.” However, with Judy’s guidance, she overcame her fear and is now “much more confident” with sewing.
Likewise, Judy’s 5th grade classes are working on creating a large Freedom Quilt using coded patterns created from the Underground Railroad. Students learn the basics of quilting and then create their own quilt squares with hidden messages! These squares will then be stitched together into a larger class quilt.
Sample of a quilt patch made by a 5th grader
Judy’s AH residency will culminate with a wonderful exhibition of the amazing work done by students throughout the spring semester. The 3rd graders, in particular, will introduce their characters during a puppet show interview.
NEXT SPOTLIGHT: Vickie Fremont’s AH residency at PS 85X in partnership with Fordham University
Arts Horizons is pleased to welcome Mr. Kiran Rajagopalan to our team as the Program Coordinator for the NYC Residencies and Special Populations Department.
Kiran is an accomplished dancer, choreographer, writer, and educator. Trained extensively in Bharatanatyam (Indian classical dance) for over 25 years, Kiran has given many acclaimed performances in India, Indonesia, Germany, Spain, France, and the United States. While living in India from 2007-2014, he organized free dance workshops and performances for underprivileged students in government (public) schools throughout the country. After returning to the United States to pursue a master’s degree in Performance Studies at NYU, he became a teaching artist in the New York public school system and conducted residencies for 3-8th graders which seamlessly integrate poetry, science, and/or reading comprehension with Bharatanatyam. He joined Arts Horizons in December 2016 as a program coordinator, and he serves as a liaison between the administrative team in the New Jersey office and the teaching artists and site coordinators for residencies in New York. He also conducts site visits to assess and evaluate residencies.
Aside from his work in arts education, Kiran regularly conducts workshops, lectures, and demonstrations on Indian classical dance and science. His “NeuroArt” talks on aesthetics, performance, and neuroscience have been particularly appreciated. In addition, he is the founder and artistic director of Daya Arts which promotes Bharatanatyam through artist-to-artist collaborations and small ensemble work. In 2016, he co-founded No Rest in the Kingdom as an initiative to facilitate new conversations between disparate communities of color on issues of gender, race, class, & colonialism in the arts.
Dena Malarek, Arts Horizons Director of NYC Residencies and Special Populations had the opportunity to participate in the 2014 VSA Intersections: Arts and Special Education Conference, A Jean Kennedy Smith Arts and Disability Program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. The conference brings together a national and international community of educators, administrators, researchers, teaching artists and more interested in improving the arts learning experience for students with disabilities.
Attendees utilized the Guidebook app to stay connected to the most current conference materials, personalize your own schedule, obtain contact cards with other attendees and participate in social media (#vsaintersections ) directly in the guidebook app. The pre-conference workshops and conference workshops were offered along various tracks including: Drama/Theater, Dance, Visual Arts, Music, Research, and Across Art Disciplines. A rich wealth of information was captured in the conference – below are two notable workshops on arts and special education.
An exciting presentation, by the Barber National Institute explored the use of iBooks and other digital art technology to create social stories for students with Autism and intellectual disabilities. This project was a natural integration of digital arts educators, school psychologists, and special educators to develop indivualized social stories for their students. Social stories help a child with autism navigate a situation, where to direct attention and what to expect. The use of integrating digital arts for social stories is a high priority need for students with disabilities, utilizes evidence based practice (social stories and video self-modeling based on Bandura’s theory on Observational Learning, is a direct translation into digial media.
Students with Disabilities and the Core Arts Standards: Guiding Principles for Teachers, Sharon M. Malley, Ed. D.
“The Core Arts Standards are designed to guide US schools’ arts curriculum, instruction, and assessment (NCCAS, n. d.). Standards writers included a review team of arts and special education professionals, led by The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, ensuring that each standard encompasses a broad range of communication and learning styles.” The guiding inclusion standards for students with disabilities are included as an addendum, or separate guidebook directly on the national core arts standards information page. It’s function mainly is to use inclusive language and make general overarching guidelines for arts instruction for students with disabilities.
- Maintain high expectations
- Promote communicative competence
- Use the principles of Universal Design for Learning
- Know how to select and use appropriate accommodations for individual students
- Make use of evidence-based practices
- Target instruction and use formative indicators of student performance
For More Information, please contact Dena Malarek, Director of NYC Programs and Special Populations firstname.lastname@example.org
This marks the 4th year of Arts Horizons programs at Mt. Sinai Hospital (Manhattan) in collaboration with NYC DOE Hospital Schools. Music and Dance teaching artists visit the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Inpatient Services to deliver programs for each designated unit to provide educational, artistic and healing outlets for students in crisis with extended hospital stays. This program is provided u
nder contract with VSA and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Teaching Artist Mr. Derick Cross returns to provide a Hip Hop History program over 10 weeks where students had the opportunity to create music with their mouths (beatboxing), write various forms of poetry, and create Graffiti influenced art, and learn how to make improvised songs versus structured songs.
Mr. Cross describes one of his student’s experiences: “There was a young lady named Isabella. I was told not to expect much participation from her. After conducting class vocal warm ups, I had asked the class if any of the participants would like volunteer to take lead in leading the workshop exercises ,no one wanted to do it. Isabella said that she would do it. She was very successful in leading the warm up exercises. She was very active in the 2 sessions she participated in. She was also a big source of inspiration to other students. Seeing Isabella open up triggered other students who were reluctant to share to be more open and “brave” (as one student had stated).” Mr. Cross continues, “It was great to see the participants use of similes and metaphors in their poetry. I was surprised that sharing the humble New York origins of Hip Hop Culture would inspire the students to share their own personal stories through poetry.”
Derick Cross aka D. Cross is a multi-dimensional artist and educator. Cross is a Queens New York who has called Brooklyn home for over 15 years. His visual artistry is created in a variety of media including acrylics, oils, & polymer clay. D.Cross’ work has been shown throughout the New York metropolitan area as well locations nationally (Atlanta)& internationally (Sweden& Brazil ) His work is part of the collections of Erykah Badu(Singer), Ed Lewis (Founder of Essence Communications), Ruby Dee (legendary actress) Judith Jamison (Alvin Ailey Director & Legendary Dancer &choreographer) and Bashiri Johnson (Michael Jackson Percussionist & music producer) among others. As an Arts Educator Mr. Cross has worked with young people from ages 4-21 for the past 20 years .Organizations he has worked with include the NYC Department of Education, Community Works & Arts Horizons. In 2007 DCross was presented with a proclamation from State Senator Velmanette Montgomery and honored as a notable artist of the Clinton Hill/Fort Greene area. Derick Cross is currently a board member of The National conference of Artists ‘New York chapter. He is also art director of African Voices Magazine.
D.Cross the Artist on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DCrossTheArtist
For more information, contact Dena Malarek, Director of NYC Residencies and Special Populations at email@example.com