logo and banner for National Arts in Education Week

September 10 – 16, 2017: National Arts in Education Week is a national celebration recognizing the transformative power of the arts in education. Passed by Congress in 2010 through House Resolution 275, the celebration is designated to bring attention to this cause for elected officials and educational decision makers across the country and to support equitable access to the arts for all students.

Students in a gallery at the Hawaii State Art Museum

Kamaile Academy Public Charter School students at the Hawai`i State Art Museum

“This is one of the best ways to get students to really engage through discussion, critical thinking, and personal experience in art. When all of these conditions exist it lends itself to creating a positive, engaging and lasting impression; a strong art experience that students will remember.” – teacher Shawn H., Aikahi Elementary School, speaking about the Art Bento program

The State Foundation on Culture and the Arts provides arts education to State of Hawai`i Department of Education (DOE) students K-12 through the following programs:

  • Art Bento Program @ HiSAM: A standards-based inquiry-focused museum outreach program for Oahu Hawai`i DOE Public and Public Charter Schools Grades 2-6.
  • Artists in the Schools (AITS): Public and charter schools statewide can apply annually for up to $6000 to bring a teaching artist to the school for an arts residency in drama, dance, music, visual art or literary art.Every year, about 12,000 K-12 students engage in active, joyful, creative learning through this program.
  • Professional Development for Educators: SFCA supports professional development (PD) in the arts for classroom teachers and teaching artists, through institutes, courses and workshops.For classroom teachers, the goal is to help them learn how to integrate the arts with other core subject areas.For teaching artists, the goal is to hone their teaching skills and to ensure that they are abreast of national trends and best practices in arts education.
  • Art in Public Places – Artists in Residence (APP-AIR) Program: A collaborative program with the State of Hawai‘i Department of Education (DOE), established to implement an integrated visual arts in education program, while providing commissioned works of art in public schools.
  • Poetry Out Loud: National poetry recitation competition for high school students.SFCA is responsible for the state level competition which involves public, private, charter and homeschooled students from all islands.Students learn about their literary heritage by choosing, memorizing and performing classic and contemporary poems.They also build self-confidence and public-speaking skills.
  • Hawai‘i Regional Scholastic Art Awards at the Hawai‘i State Art Museum (HiSAM): This annual competition and exhibition recognizes creative excellence among Hawaii’s public and private school students in grades 7-12, and is done in collaboration with the DOE and the national Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.
  • Young Artists of Hawai‘i: formerly called the Hawai‘i Convention Center Student Art Exhibition, this annual exhibition is done in collaboration with the DOE, the Hawaii Association of Independent Schools, and the Hawaii Convention Center. Young Artists of Hawai‘i was established by the SFCA to provide opportunities for public and private school students K-6 to participate in a juried art competition and present their artwork in a professional setting.
people looking at a display of student artwork

Visitors at the 2017 Young Artists of Hawai‘i exhibit “My Culture, My Family, and Me” at the Hawai‘i Convention Center.

“…one of my quietest and most reluctant students, shared and spoke more during this (visual arts) residency than I had ever heard in the seven months prior.  He was engaged, lively, and excited to come to class every day.  He would sometimes pop in at recess or stay after class, something he’d never done before.  It was such an important reminder to me that we need to expose our students to a variety of creative outlets because you never know what is going to truly reach a child.” – intermediate school teacher reflecting on their AITS experience

group of students dressed as pirates, on a theater stage

Aiea Elementary School students during an AITS residency with the Hawaii Opera Theatre

Tell your own personal story of the transformative power of the arts in education on social media, using the hashtags #BecauseOfArtsEd and #ArtsEdWeek! How has arts education changed your life? Did you benefit from arts education programs? What positive impact did the arts have on you in school?

This article originally published in the September 2017 SFCA eNews email newsletter. Read online and subscribe here: SFCA eNews

Read more about our education programs: SFCA Education Programs