EXPO CHICAGO, Chicago Children’s Museum, Illinois Network of Charter Schools and Marwen are delighted to collaborate on a project designed to provide an intensive arts experience for children who might not otherwise experience the arts outside their classroom. Through this free program, 60 fifth grade Chicago Charter School students will expand their understanding of the art world, interact with real artists and make art. Every child will visit EXPO CHICAGO and Chicago Children’s Museum for a culminating celebration of the project.
The program will start with an introduction to the project by the onsite teacher who will present the overall project and lead a warm-up arts activity based on a lesson plan provided by CCM and the artist. Next, printmaker Jon Stein will lead two school art workshops for 30 students facilitated by a Chicago Children’s Museum educator. During the first workshop, the artist will share his art form, answer questions and begin printmaking. On his next visit, the children will create several prints. As a powerful way of teaching students to take pride in their work, their artwork will be displayed at Chicago Children’s Museum.
Thirty additional students will join in the final celebration of this project during an EXPO tour and Chicago Children’s Museum visit. The EXPO tour will be led by Marwen high school students trained in helping viewers to consider thoughtful questions in response to what they see. During the visit to CCM, all sixty students will have the opportunity to participate in art making workshops in the Kraft Artabounds Studio and add to a temporary art display in the Kraft Artabounds Gallery. All participating students will be provided with free pass to return to the museum and EXPO CHICAGO with their families.
EXPO CHICAGO will be posting updates from the artist and student on their website to generate interest in the project. The student writing will also be included in a photo scrapbook that will be create for the public to view at the EXPO along with an invitation to view the art on display at Chicago Children’s Museum. After the project is over, the book will be presented back to the school for future generations to enjoy.
What was your favorite thing about the Chicago Children’s Museum/EXPO visiting artist program?
“My favorite this about it was when I got to put down something that represents me to my viewers. And when people see my things they will understand what I’m trying to show them.” Devon B, 11
What did you learn?
“I learned you can overlap and put different shapes to make one shape. You can use different colors that are interesting.”
Karen W, 11
“I learned that you can be creative when it comes to art and that everything doesn’t have to be perfect. You can break the rules.”
Damari N, 10
Chicago Children’s Museum was founded in 1982 in response to cutbacks in arts programming in Chicago Public Schools. Throughout its 30-year history, the museum has expanded and evolved its programming and exhibits to explore such topics as math, science, the arts, diversity and literacy for children through age 10 while remaining committed to providing high-quality arts programming for young children. Today, the museum is a leader in its field and respected for its creative, interactive exhibits; rich variety of child-centered, responsive educational programming; and innovative community engagement initiatives. All museum exhibits and programs encourage children and their families to utilize creative, open-ended play as a tool for learning. With over 650,000 annual visitors to the museum and in programs throughout Chicago, CCM is the third most-visited children’s museum in the country.
Chicago Children’s Museum is also recognized for its work with communities throughout Chicago. Understanding that success depends on its relevance to all of Chicago’s families, the museum invests considerable resources to providing access for low-income and underserved families. This commitment has resulted in relationships with over 400 community organizations and a wealth of programs that reflect and address the interests and needs of the museum’s diverse audiences.