The Art Bus was created to provide arts education to youth from low income families with limited or no access to arts programming. ART ASAP, Incorporated built The Art Bus to provide a high quality, hands-on learning experience with the goal of developing artist- mentor relationships with youth participants. We give under-served youth the opportunity to feel, heal, and create with the hope that young people exposed to poverty, violence, or addiction find an outlet in creative and constructive ways through the art-making process. ART ASAP encourages artistic growth and creative self-expression through exposure to talented teaching artists throughout the school year and summer sessions.
Focusing on 4th through 8th graders during 2 hour weekly art classes, artists introduce tools for self-expression through specific art assignments. Artist-mentors direct the participant’s energy by demonstrating how emotions can be channelled into creative and meaningful acts. Students develop skills in a variety of media and develop confidence in their artistic voice. A primary goal is to develop artist-mentor relationships, crucial at the age when participants navigate the difficult period of childhood through adolescence. Artists selected to work on The Art Bus team will be chosen based on their professional artistic excellence, teaching experience with children from diverse communities, ability to mentor, and commitment to achieve program goals.
A Typical Day on the Art Bus
• Each session is 3 hours long (includes prep and clean-up)
• Students arrive at the bus and sign in on the attendance white board
• We begin with 5 minutes of deep breathing and stretching to focus and relax
• Teaching artists and interns introduce the art project and specify objectives
• Each student chooses from appropriate materials for the project
• Teachers demonstrate techniques and describe skills to be developed in the medium
• A time frame for completing the art project (number of sessions) is specified
• Mid-way through the session students will be provided with a break and healthy snack
• Teachers dedicate time to each student to develop the mentor-student relationship
• At the session’s end students are given ideas to take home to reinforce the project goals
The Art Bus strengthens the community by offering a positive place to gather and offers youth a safe, creative outlet as an alternative to the latchkey lifestyle affecting many family units. Art projects enhance self esteem and bridge the gap for isolated youth by involving and collaborating with mixed age groups in youth art shows. Members of the community benefit by achieving a sense of inclusion at an exhibition at the project’s conclusion.
The Art Bus "Stopping in Your Neighborhood Today"