A Message from our Founder
Back to school has always been my favorite time of year. There’s something so special about the blank slate that lies ahead. Who will walk through the door on the first day of class? How will the theme of the year unfold? How will the culminating performances come to life?
This year, we are especially excited to be back in the buildings of our partner schools and teaching children without the use of a virtual platform. The immediate and interactive feedback loop present between students and teachers in the same room together just can’t be beat: watching students' eyes light up when they experience that first taste of success, sensing their pride in their accomplishments, and helping them grow together as a team are all highlights of our teaching artists’ experience. Armed with new teaching tools and with safety at the forefront, they are ready to joyfully charge into the school year with enthusiasm and the determination to give our dancers the best of themselves each and every day because at the forefront of all that we do is the belief that each and every one of them deserves nothing less.
Thank you for your continued interest in all things ArtSparks. I look forward to keeping you updated about what is sure to be an incredible school year!
A Message from our Founder
Mr. Simon Says
Back to School Shopping!
Did you know that ArtSparks uses books, props, and games to further engage our young dancers in curricular content, artistic expression, and teamwork?
Our “Back to School Wishlist” is full of items to enhance the experience of our dancers. From jump ropes, hula hoops, and scarves that serve as “connectors” for our Dynamite Duos dancers to new books and stories to explore through movement in our Pre-K classes this list is packed with our wishes for our students.
Want to be part of the back-to-school magic? Help us by purchasing an item from our Amazon Wishlist so you can see them in action this school year!
We call them “the Originals.”
They were part of the first ever TNT as 3rd graders from DeWitt and Resnik. They were the first to pilot our next tier of the team: eXtra Dymainte (XD). They were the first to set the tone of community, family, joy, and humor that runs strong in our Advanced Teams today. And now they are off to new adventures as they start their high school journey.
I could not have asked for a more incredible group of young people to grow up with me in the TNT/XD scholarship program. These five dancers that were with me from the beginning of my ArtSparks tenure have made the team what it is today. I am immensely proud of their accomplishments as dancers and performing artists, but also of the respect, enthusiasm, grit, and leadership they have maintained throughout their time as scholarship dancers. If you are going to write this in first person, you need to identify who the “I” is, otherwise, we should use the word we. :)
To Savhannah Sky, Liz-agna, Maddy Rice Krsipy, Emi Em, and Kingstonian, thank you for making ArtSparks a fun, playful, joyful place of possibilities. Here’s a look back on good times with “the Originals” and their team!
Staff Professional Development
One of our core values at ArtSparks is LIFELONG LEARNING. We inspire that joy of learning in our dancers, but our staff is committed to lifelong learning, too! This past summer, the ArtSparks team attended several professional development workshops including:
RaceFoward: Building Racial Equity Training
Our takeaways….. BRE training really gave us the language to talk about race and racism in our work as well as tools to plan and activate change.
Our takeaways…..The Bridges Workshop paints a clear picture of poverty and the systemic challenges many in our community face simply to survive day to day.
Our takeaways…..as always we are learning from the best when it comes to NDI. The National Dance Institute pedagogy empowers, engages, and inspires children to find and be their best. We recommend the NDI Collaborative to any and every teacher looking to reach every child in a deep and transformative way.
Support ArtSparks today!
You can play a key role in fostering creativity and self-confidence as children experience the Arts in new and profound ways.
You’ll encourage children to develop a belief in themselves that impacts all aspects of their lives.
Your generosity provides access to high-quality dance programming along with the ArtSparks commitment to fostering the understanding of dance as an art form while challenging students of all ages and abilities to discover new heights of individual excellence.