By Nola Bryant, Museum Educator
It’s a busy time of year in the education department with the VSA Festival fast approaching. Each year we offer an outreach program to classes of special needs students from schools participating in the VSA Festival. Schools from Duval, St. Johns, Clay and Nassua counties have the opportunity to attend the annual festival.
Teachers have the option of booking an outreach visit with me where I visit the classroom, speak to the students about what to expect at this years festival, and complete an art activity. This year we are painting aprons that students can wear to the museum during the festival. Each student chooses a colored apron and is encouraged to paint it with images that represent themselves. Free painting and color exploration is also encouraged.
As a Museum Educator, I find it very rewarding to serve a population of students that is often under-served in the arts. Students that do have the opportunity to paint often find pleasure in showing their teachers and myself just how well they can paint, while others look up at me with astonishment when given the freedom to paint. Whether it’s their first outreach visit or I’ve visited in the past, teachers and students love the classroom time spent together doing and talking about art and look forward to it every year as do I.
If you are one of the many volunteers at VSA this year you can easily spot the classes you know received a visit- just look for the beautifully painted apron.