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South Brunswick Residents Awarded Governor’s Arts Education Medal

Importance of creative arts celebrated in South Brunswick.

Arts training is crucial to developing creativity. With this in mind, a two-week creative arts summer program entitled “In a Kaleidoscope,” infused with the 4C's, (Critical thinking and problem solving, Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity) will be offered at Crossroads North Middle School from July 30 through Aug. 10.

“In A Kaleidoscope” was recognized by the State of New Jersey in 2000, and awarded the prestigious title of “Best Practice,” the only middle school arts literacy project to be so honored.  This enjoyable, visual arts-based writing program combining left and right activities is designed to enhance every level of student writing through artistic expression.

Using different, simple techniques with paint to create expressive art, students analyze their work from various angles, distances, and lighting, much like tilting a kaleidoscope offers a multifaceted view of an object.

A study of various authors and illustrators of favorite books shows students the best techniques used in children’s literature. After creating their own visual pieces, students share and engage in oral storytelling. These visual pieces then become a springboard for students to create writing.

“In a Kaleidoscope,” addresses the NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards in inventive ways. The work students will accomplish cuts across Language Arts, Visual and Performing Arts, other content areas and work place readiness skills such as problem solving and cooperative learning strategies, skills that will benefit them in all facets of their life.

The project is taught by accomplished artist/teachers Jane Eilbacher who holds an MS in Creative Arts from the Graduate School of Education, Rutgers and Janice Forte who earned a BA in English from Montclair. Together they have inspired and challenged hundreds of middle school students to turn their minds into kaleidoscopes combining images and words into cherished colorful poetry and prose.

As part of a major arts event last week, two South Brunswick residents, South Brunswick High School student Rachel Greenberg and Arts Advocate Jacque Rubel, were awarded the Governor’s Arts Education Medal.

The same day, the arts community released Keeping The Promise Arts Education for Every Child; The Distance Travelled; The Journey Remaining, a collaborative partnership with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the New Jersey Department of Education, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, New Jersey Arts Education Partnership, ArtPride New Jersey Foundation, and Quadrant Arts Education Research. The Partnership for 21st (P21) Century Skills, colleges and employers cite the importance of fusing the 3R's, 4C's and innovation with an emphasis on arts training. “In a Kaleidoscope” is a great way to answer that challenge.

“In a Kaleidoscope” is planned in conjunction with the Aging in Place PARTNERSHIP (AIPP) and the South Brunswick School District Office of Curriculum and Instruction.  For registration information, visit the Community Education website at www.sbschools.org/community_ed, or contact Nancy Kinal at Nancy.Kinal@sbschools.org or 732-297-7800. 

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