Tuscan students benefit from artist in residence workshops

MAPLEWOOD, NJ — After receiving a grant from the Artists in Education Residency Grant Program, Tuscan School students were able to engage with a professional teaching artist. Fourth-grade students in Gina Garofalo’s homeroom and Andrew Dean’s art classes worked with artist Barbara M. Bickart for 25 days of hands-on workshops to create and produce a video-performance installation.

This residency motivated students to develop their identity and personal narrative individually, as well as what role they play within the greater context of the community. Students produced a video-performance installation focused through the prompt: “I am from…” Subsequently they worked collaboratively, developing “We are from…” to further promote tolerance, acceptance, diversity, and positive social and community change. This work culminated in a live performance installation showcase on Dec. 13.

This project also provided an opportunity for students to continue developing personally relevant writing skills. Students explored various mediums to express their written words in addition to their classroom writing practice.

The Artists in Education Residency Grant Program is a co-sponsored project of The New Jersey State Council on the Arts and Young Audiences New Jersey & Eastern Pennsylvania. The program is carried out in partnership with regional partners, including Appel Farm Arts & Music Center and Morris Arts.

To see the students’ project, visit https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HrE_7s9MAHgGlRpKJOJVTzVlg3hI4XvT/view?usp=sharing.