Arts in Education News 


Carolyn Ward - Artist Residency Grant at Dover Middle School

“The collaboration between students, artist and staff was extraordinary and especially important coming out of the isolation experienced during the pandemic. The effort resulted in a work of art that truly enhances the school. We are grateful to the individuals whose contributions made this grant award possible and we congratulate the students, staff, and artist on a highly successful artist residency program.” –Director Arts in Education, Barbara Reuther

In October 2022, we unveiled the inaugural Carolyn Ward Arts in Education Residency mural project. Thanks to the generosity of group of donors, we were able to award a grant valued at $5,500 to Dover Middle School.
Given many choices, the principal and teachers selected artist Dan Fenelon for a mural residency and the result is a vibrant and colorful work of art that celebrates the diversity of student interests and talents. The completed mural transformed a very bland corridor into a colorful and inviting space that students pass through each day on their way to classes. The students and staff could not have been more grateful for this grant, and we don’t think we could have found a more deserving school. 
The video above captures the sentiments of students and administrators celebrating this exciting new work at their school. 

Assemblyman John F. McKeon Celebrates Artist Residency Mural

Raindrops did not prevent St. Cloud Elementary School in West Orange from celebrating their new mural created during a Morris Arts Residency with artist Caren Frost Olmsted.The ribbon cutting was officiated by Assemblyman John F. McKeon, Principal Eric Price and Susan Kantor, a second grade teacher who initiated the mural project along with artist Caren Frost Olmsted. “I am retiring and I wanted to leave a lasting gift” Susan Kantor said. “The mural gives everyone in the building a sense of ownership and a feeling of community awareness.” Every student, every teacher, each staff member, and any parent wishing to participate had a hand in the sketching, painting, and completion of the mural.

The mural titled “The Six Pillars of Knowledge” depicts some West Orange landmarks such as the Edison Lab, Town Hall, and Turtleback Zoo and also features prominent figures like Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Edison, Clara Barton, Jackie Robinson, and Martin Luther King.

Enjoy the entire residency process in this short video!

In the photos below you can see the work in progress and the finished mural images. To learn more about the Morris Arts Residency programs click on this link.


Multicultural Folk Dance Residency 

Third grade students at Mount Prospect Elementary School in Bernard's Township traveled the globe with Morris Arts teaching artist Joanna Pang Atkins learning dances from Russia, Mexico, Kenya, Japan and Scotland. Their dances were presented to their classmates during an afternoon school performance and then again for the entire school community and parents as part of an International Day Fair celebrating the diverse culture of the school. "School Principal Judith Slutzky said she had always wanted to hold an international day, but last year launched the program with the help of dedicated parent volunteers Riham Elkashef, Achint Kaur, Helen Woo and Denise Zangara." Read more about this residency in this article from the Basking Ridge Patch.

Photo from Basking Ridge Patch - Credit Linda Sadlouskos


Roxbury High School - Mural Residency 

Think good thoughts, say kind words, do good deeds. That's the central theme of a new, outdoor mural created by 60 Roxbury High School art students and their teachers during an Arts Council of the Morris Area, artist residency with Spiritree artists Carol Hendrickson and Marco Giametti. The students were inspired by a program called "Rachel's Challenge." Modeled after the writings of Rachel Scott, the first student killed in the massacre at Columbine High School, the program challenges young people to start a "chain reaction" of kindness and compassion in their communities.

"I hope that the mural will embody all the positive character traits that we value not only as a school system but as a community," said Mike Rossi, superintendent of schools.The mural, which stands 16 feet high and 32 feet wide, was unveiled during a brief ceremony at the school July 14. During the ceremony, Anne Aronovitch, executive director of the Arts Council of the Morris Area, presented Roxbury High School with the 2010 Joyce Talbot Award for Outstanding Arts School. State Senator Anthony Bucco and State Assemblyman Anthony Bucco Jr. were also in attendance to announce their sponsorship of a joint Senate-Assembly resolution recognizing the achievement. Click here to watch a clip of the mural unveiling! Click here for the blog which captured the work in progress. 

The Dot and The Line

A new Arts Council residency debuted this Spring at Franklin Township School where videographer Jason Koontz worked with students to create a short film based on the book "The Dot and The Line". Check out the blog for a glimpse into the creative process and watch this short clip to for a "behind the scenes" look at the making of the squiggle.

21 Century Learning and the Arts

Arts Council teaching artists spent a summer morning learning about the integration of 21 Century Skills into K-12 Arts Education and were introduced to wikis, blogs and other new technologies.

The 21st Century Skills Map for the Arts demonstrates how the three Rs and four Cs (critical thinking and problem solving, communication, collaboration and creativity and innovation) can be fused within arts curriculum. The map was released at a Capitol Hill Briefing by representatives from P21, the American Alliance f...or Theatre & Education, the Educational Theatre Association, the National Art Education Association, MENC: The National Association for Music Education, the National Dance Association, and the National Dance Education Organization.

The map provides educator-created examples of how art subjects (dance, music, theatre, and visual and media arts) can be fused with skills to create engaging learning experiences that promote 21st century knowledge and skill acquisition.

Download the 21st Century Skills Map by clicking