Washougal, WA – Washougal School District and Washougal Arts and Culture Alliance have collaborated to shine a spotlight on student art throughout March, which is recognized nationally as Youth Art Month.
“The arts are an important element of our students’ education in Washougal,” said Mary Templeton, WSD Superintendent. “Student exposure and participation in both fine arts and performance arts are essential to educating the whole child.” Research indicates that high-quality art educational opportunities can improve critical-thinking skills and even help to foster important values such as empathy and acceptance.
Washougal Youth Arts Month is made possible through partnerships with area artists, Washougal Community Education, Washougal Public Library, Washougal Schools Foundation and more. Students will have opportunities to make and display art throughout the events and activities planned all month long.
“Washougal school district began offering fine art classes to all elementary students this school year and the students are excited to display their pieces for the community,” said Alice Yang, Cape Horn-Skye Art Teacher. “The level of creativity shown by our youth is impressive!”
The Washougal elementary classes join the robust fine and performance arts programs at the middle and high school levels. The gallery will also include works by WHS Career and Technical Education students with photography, metal and wood pieces. WHS Culinary Arts students will supply artistically created sugar cookies using cutter designs made with the school’s 3-D printer. A variety of school band and choir concerts will be performed in March and a Drama Camp run by WHS drama students as a fundraiser is available to elementary students.
Washougal Community Education is offering a variety of classes.
“We are pleased to have some new art opportunities for our students, and parents, to explore their creative side,” said Kathy Douglas-Evans, Washougal Community Education. The Paint Roller and Washougal glass artist, Shirley Bishop, stepped up to provide these new, creative classes for youth. They include glass fusing, rock and face painting, and kids and family canvas painting. Register on the Washougal Community Education webpage at www.washougal.k12.wa.us/wcer Pieces created in these classes will be on display at 54-40 Brewing and Washougal Coffee Company at the end of the March.
As a part of WYAM, WACA is inviting all Washougal students to participate in a fun photography challenge. “We’re asking them to grab their smartphone or digital camera and share through photography the beautiful public art in the City of Washougal,” said Susan Warford, WACA Board member. “We want them to find unique angles, use interesting lighting, include family or friends, have fun and be creative!” Images will be shared on the WACA website and FB pages. For details and student release form go to http://washougalarts.org
Other community partners are the Washougal Public library, offering a free live concert, chalk art, pottery and crafts and Washougal School of Music, who is hosting a community recital showcasing the talents of their students as well as those of local music teacher, Chuck Carpenter.
Washougal Youth Arts Month will receive formal recognition from both the City of Washougal and Washougal School Board. On February 25, Mayor Molly Coston will sign a proclamation declaring March Youth Arts Month in Washougal. The Washougal School Board of Directors will issue a resolution supporting Youth Arts Month on February 26 at their regularly scheduled meeting. Youth Art Month started in 1961 when the Council for Art Education and National Art Education Association named March as Youth Art Month to recognize art education and the value of art to create a better quality of life for all people.
For a full list of scheduled activities and events throughout the month of March, go to http://www.washougal.k12.wa.us/