Who We Are
Arts in Education engages a network of passionate and dedicated artists to teach after-school theater classes to underserved middle school students in the Lower East Side and East Village, filling the critical void left by underfunded or nonexistent drama programs
Arts in Education is offered after-school, completely free! two days a week from 3:30 to 5:30pm for 9 weeks in the Spring and Fall. Throughout the program kids engage in ensemble building games, improvisation exercises, text analysis, physical theater exercises, writing exercises, original choreography, character creation, playwriting and clowning and mask making workshops. The students show off their skills and perform their self-written playlets and scenes as well as their own dance at our Culminating Event for friends and family.
We have also recently started our Saturday Morning Workshops in Lighting/Sound and Set Design. Concerned with all things behind-the-scenes, kids work one on one with technicians and designers to create their own sets, complete with props, and design and implement their own lighting and sound cues. The students in our Saturday Tech Class create the set for our Culminating Event, allowing them an incredible opportunity to see their creations come alive on stage.
Why We Do What We Do
We believe that the dramatic arts encourage individuality, creativity, and a deep sense of fulfillment in young people and, as such, should be an essential part of our education system. Middle school is a vulnerable time for students and arts after-school programs give them a holistic foundation for high school and beyond.
According to the NYC department of Education 2012-2013 Annual Arts Report only 14% of middle schools offer theater in school and since 2008 the number of middle schools providing theater arts to any grade from 6 to 8 declined by 17%. The New York Times also reported that two-thirds of public elementary schools have no art or music teachers what so ever.
That’s where we come in!
Through the dramatic arts we engage kids through theater to foster self-confidence, leadership and community building, freedom of expression, and increased language facility and reading comprehension, accomplishments we have seen first hand.
What never ceases to amaze us is the dedication and excitement our students have for learning these theater skills that allow them to better not only themselves but their community as well. It is an incredible thing to watch them grow not only as individuals but also as a theater family, and you can help!
Theater for the New City