Mission of the Ferst Center's K-12 Program
The mission of the Arts Education Program is to expand and enhance the curriculum of the Ferst Center's partner schools by offering students and their families exposure to the arts in music and dance. Utilizing the resources of Georgia Tech, the Arts Education Program brings a new generation to the theater while reinforcing the educationally relevant aspects of that experience in the classroom as well as in the home.
The Arts Education Program was established in 1998 with a grant from the Lila Wallace - Reader’s Digest Fund. During the 1998-1999 school year over 500 students from neighboring Centennial Place Elementary School and their parents participated in interactive workshops and attended performances featuring world-renowned artists. The tremendous success of the first year led to the inclusion of Grady High School students for the second year of the program.
Pictured above: Guitarist Peter White conducts a workshop with students from Centennial Place Elementary.
Discovering the Arts Continues
The Arts Education program continues in exciting ways each year, building on the core program initially established with Centennial Place Elementary and Grady High School and expanding to include Drew Charter School. Students receive study guides and prepare in advance to participate in interactive workshops with world renowned artists. Workshops (including master classes for Grady High dance students) are then conducted by artists who share their passion, background, and artistry with the students. Students and their families attend performances by these artists at the Ferst Center as an integral part of the program.
After attending the workshops and performances, students are expected to acquire knowledge and skills based on the type of presentation. The body of knowledge and skills includes: learning about various cultures as represented by the performers, identifying various world nations on a map, conducting age-appropriate scientific experiments on the properties of sound, identifying various musical instruments by sight and sound, learning appropriate listening behavior, and learning basic terminology for each genre presented.
In recent years the Arts Education program has added the exploration of visual arts, often working in conjunction with Hammonds House Museum. Centennial Place students study the work of well-known visual artists and then create their own artwork that is displayed in the Ferst Center Galleries.
Pictured at right: Guitarist Earl Klugh conducts a workshop at Centennial Place.
This program is made possible by the generous support of the Fulton County Arts Council, South Arts, the Georgia Council for the Arts through appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly (GCA is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts), the Georgia Innovation Fund's Race to the Top program and Chamber Music America.
For information on supporting this program please call 404-894-2787.