Jun 02, 2017
A group of elementary school students learned the art of imperfection through a Humboldt State visual arts program that brings the University and local communities together.
Garfield Elementary students worked together to create papier mâché finger puppets, plus other group and individual work, during a recent three-day workshop at the Studio School. Run by HSU’s College of Extended Education & Global Engagement, the visual arts program has offered local youth various art classes at HSU since 1995.
Seeking an art-intensive experience for her students, Garfield Elementary School teacher Alaina Kelley approached HSU’s College of Extended Education & Global Engagement, who connected her with HSU Art Professor Jim Woglom. He turned to a group of Art Education majors who developed the entire workshop curriculum during their Spring semester.
“My students took the ball and ran with it,” says Woglom. “It was a really positive learning experience for them, especially learning how to adapt lesson plans to the group we were working with.”
Last week, they put their course creation to the test and taught the workshop, which examined the art of imperfection.
“They focused on accepting imperfection and striving for excellence in art and life,” says Kelley. “We wanted them to think about how to embrace the things that aren’t working out in our art or in other aspects of life.”
Working in a real art studio gave elementary students a unique and invaluable perspective on the art process and of the campus, she says.
“Being on a college campus was exciting for students, and hopefully it will encourage them to consider other academic pursuits.”
Woglom, who investigates the intersection between service learning and socially-engaged art practices, feels so strongly about the importance of making art accessible to all that he’s donating $1875 in proceeds to a scholarship fund, which will support future Studio School students.
“A big part of our mission in Art Education at HSU is spreading art equity. We have a chance to offer more opportunities for art education to the community,” says Woglom. “Scholarships will help more kids in our community get exposed to cool art experiences. It’s a super-benefit to this kind of collaboration.”
Garfield Elementary School students’ workshop art will be on display during Arts Alive at the Morris Graves Museum on Saturday, June 3, 5-8 p.m.