I taught my first drama class at Inner-City Arts in 2004, and I'm still teaching here today! That alone should show how dedicated I am to the work being done here.
I will only bug you for money once every five years, so the time has come again. Please, if you are looking for a place to donate over the holidays--make Inner-City Arts your choice!
Arts education is VITAL in the world we are living in today. We know it improves student retention rates and reduces the achievement gap. Most students in California don't receive arts education--even as required by law.
I teach drama and film, but there are tons of other amazing things going on here everyday. We teach dance, music, graphic design, visual arts, ceramics, Creativity Lab, animation--and that is just our school day program. We also offer classes for middle and high school students after-school and on weekends.
Those are just the facts--what I really want to tell you is what motivates me to work here year after year. First off, the space is amazing. It looks nothing like a classroom--these are "studios" we teach in, so as soon as students walk through the gates they are entering a creative space. Second, we don't grade the kids or have a pre-mandated curriculum to follow. Our teaching artists activate their creativty through creating new and innovative sequenced curriculum for the students.
Mostly, though, these kids transform my life for the better on a daily basis. My studio is filled with laughter, fun & the creative spirit. When you greet 90+ kids a day who bring huge smiles on their faces and excitement for what's to come, it's hard not to feed off their energy.
Every kid deserves programming like this as part of a holistic education. In our studios, students are ENGAGED & their minds are activated. Team-work is the name of the game, and we all learn how to work together in mini-communities to support one another and thrive.
It is more than "the arts." It's about encouraging students to express themselves, to challenge their creativity & to problem solve as a team. These are precisely the skills we need in the world today, and Inner-City Arts is here to help facilitate creativity in our future leaders.
This has been my life's work. I scrounged around teaching at after-school programs, interning & working as an assistant until I landed the gig of my dreams. I went for my PhD in Educational Theatre so that I can be the best possible educator for these students. I continue to hone my skills, learn from my talented peers and adapt my curriculum, as students continue to bring their creative drive and sense of fun.
I am beyond grateful to have the opportunity, space & freedom to teach thousands and thousands of students throughout Los Angeles. Inner-City Arts is what we need in the world of education. Please help us continue this work!
Thanks a billion & much love,