Every student at Cloverland Elementary School produced a piece of art for the school’s Sixth Annual Art Corps Art Show — that’s 540 pieces of student artwork, plus teacher artwork. This year’s theme was “Art & Soul” for the event that was open to the public, held May 12-13.
Art Corps is a comprehensive program that originated in San Diego and brings hands-on art experience instruction to children by teaching artistic fundamentals.
Now that her students have had Art Corps lessons since the first grade, sixth grade teacher Lori Guyll notices the impact.
“In sixth grade, it’s neat to see it all come together,” said Guyll, adding that her students remembered the lessons they learned from earlier grade levels. “I think it really sticks with them.”
Art Corps volunteer and parent Danielle Jensen, who was also a co-chair for the art show, said that for her, Art Corps offers the opportunity to help in her child’s class by teaching art lessons. She has volunteered with Art Corps since its first year at the school and now she is a sixth grade workshop leader. She said that when she comes to the classroom, the students are happy to see her because Art Corps lessons are fun and they enjoy them.
Jensen said that it’s very important to make sure no student is left out of the art show — including brand new students. The art show started on a Wednesday, but a new student arrived on the Monday prior and she gave that student an art lesson so the student could have a piece in the show.
She added that over the years, she’s seen the students grow more comfortable with the concepts. She noted that their texture lessons are really improving. As an example, she cited the improvements in their Spanish missions artwork, which are drawn with pencils, and how there is more detail and shading.
Guyll said that her students are proud of all the work they’ve done over the years and they also leave school with a portfolio. She also said that students take their time with the art lessons. She noted that some students who struggle in class do well with Art Corps lessons.
“It gives them a different way to shine in the classroom,” she said.
Jensen reported that Art Corps lessons are approximately one hour each and there are eight lessons per year for each grade level. One or two lessons are two-part lessons.
Art Corps teaches kids basic art concepts such as line, shape, shade, color, and space. The goal of the program is to enhance children’s educational experience, improve self-esteem, inspire creativity, and help students set and reach goals.