NEW HAVEN — It’s a great night when you can sneak a little bit of learning into a whole lot of fun.
That’s exactly what happened this week at New Haven Elementary School when the Title I program sponsored “Kids and Canvas Arts Night.”
Rachel Proffitt taught the painting class to approximately 50 participants. The artists painted a tiger, the school’s mascot. Chalk art was also offered to those who preferred it over painting. The chalk art was taught by Kathy Baker and Angelia Gilkey, kindergarten teachers at the school.
According to Judy Browning, Title I teacher, the arts night was for students in third through sixth grades. She added it followed an event from last year for students in kindergarten through second grade, “Snuggle Up and Read.” The painting class was chosen due to its popularity throughout the community, Browning said.
The entire event was free for those attending. Browning, along with other Title I teachers Lorie Grimm and Ammie Jordan, organized the evening, as well as the school counselor, Dee Ingels.
Parents were given handouts that explained the importance of art in education. According to the National Arts Education Public Awareness Campaign, young people who participate in the arts regularly are more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, participate in a math and science fair, and win an award for school attendance, among others.
In addition, young artists, as compared to their peers, are more likely to participate in youth groups, read for pleasure, and perform community service. The campaign also states that art education makes an impact on the developmental growth of children and has been proven to help level the “learning field” across socioeconomic boundaries.
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing who lives in Mason County.