We have been conducting registration for the 2008 SmART in the City program, a free, five-week total arts immersion camp for City of Cleveland fifth- and sixth-graders. SmART is a remarkable partnership of funders, arts organizations, local artists and neighborhood community facilities that offers more than 400 children an opportunity to experience – hands-on – all forms of the arts in neighborhood settings close to home.
In 2007, UBS Wealth Management provided generous funding, supplemented by the Cleveland Foundation, for two summers of intensive arts programming for youth. The program is designed and managed by the foundation through partnerships with eight local arts organizations (see below) and eight area community centers and Catholic and charter schools. Last year the program was a tremendous success and we are back again, with an even better and more comprehensive program.
Our cultural partners all have experience working with urban youth. Each has developed a multi-arts curriculum based on the theme of “Self-Discovery” and infused with language arts learning. Children will journal every day, learn the language of the arts and expand their vocabulary in other areas. There will be field trips to hear the Cleveland Orchestra rehearse at Severance Hall and a visit to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.
At a registration session last week, one mother asked if her child could come late each day because he wanted to eat breakfast at home instead of having the free breakfast offered to all children in the program (they get a free lunch, too). Another mother, whose child was in the program last year, piped right up and said, “You don’t want that. If he misses even 10 minutes, he will miss a lot. My boy gave me grief last year if I dropped him off even two minutes late.”
Watch this space for updates as the program unfolds over the summer. The foundation will be hosting a profile of the program through our website at the link above. At the program’s end, there will be video, photographs, poems and artwork from the children, plus news and stories from the program.
It’s going to be a great summer for these kids.
West Side SmART sites:
- Great Lakes Theater at St. Mel School
- Young Audiences at West Side Community House
- Progressive Arts Alliance at Spanish American Day Care
- Cleveland Public Theatre at Old Brooklyn Community School
East Side SmART sites:
- Cleveland Play House at Boys and Girls Club, Broadway
- Dance Afrika Dance at Friendly Inn Settlement House
- CWRU Art Studio faculty at CWRU Art Studio
- Opera Cleveland at St. Jerome School