Project P-ART-nership... our Favorite Friday Activity!
While the Wayne Center for the Arts is closed on Fridays (and most weeks fairly quiet), once a month the walls and halls are filled with happy sounds of drumming, dancing, and more!
Led by Tri-County Educational Service Center, Project PARTnership is a series of monthly fine arts classes in music, drama, creative movement, and pottery. These classes are offered to high school special education students and take place here at the Arts Center with some of our instructors helping out as well.
Arts lessons are designed to increase self-determination skills while encouraging students to make choices, take risks, and improve their self-confidence through exploration in fine arts classes. “Students aren’t just practicing drama; they are also practicing ordering at a restaurant or speaking at a job interview,” explains Michelle Muro, Fine Arts Consultant with Tri-County ESC. Other classes like the creative movement and music classes help with emotional and nervous system regulation. Pottery and visual arts classes help students tap into their creative side–taking chances and expanding their perspective in a safe environment.
According to The Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning, “The arts offer unique opportunities to support social and emotional competencies: skills such as emotional regulation, personal aspirations and compassion for others, which can effectively engage students facing higher levels of personal trauma or distress.” The opportunities offered by Project PARTnership are pivotal in helping these students, who are facing a more challenging path, to develop the necessary skills to thrive.
The program ends with a special performance by a special artist or musician to inspire students to overcome their disabilities. This year, the performance featured performers from Transit Arts (a citywide youth arts development program in Columbus) and involved a mix of poetry, hip hop dancing, a violin performance and BBX. BBX is a Producer/DJ/Human Beatbox and a professional performing and teaching artist, engaging young people throughout the city through workshops in schools, recreation centers, arts organizations, and more. His performance illustrates to students of all abilities what they can accomplish through the arts and creativity.