Arts Without Boundaries encourages and facilitates student participation in the arts. We believe that student participation in art, music and writing is critical for students academically and increases the probability of a student staying in school. We support and complement class room instruction. Our programs are available to public, private and home school students.
Instruction in our schools is primarily spent in group situations like band or orchestra classes with little time for individual instruction. Many families cannot afford to provide private instruction for their children especially for those with larger families. To help address this need, Arts Without Boundaries has established critical arts enrichment programs. The following are some of the programs AWB provides for students in our community:
Student Mentoring Program AWB, in partnership with the school music programs, has instituted a program in which AWB grants scholarships to college and high school music students to teach other students. The instruction is instrument-specific and provides free lessons for younger students, an important role model for the younger students and a learning experience for the student instructors. Additional instruction and supervision is provided by experienced music teachers. This program is fully funded by AWB and operates in collaboration with school instruction.
Writing in the Schools Third grade elementary school students receive 12 weekly in-class instruction days by guest writing teachers provided by AWB. This program is directed by AWB board member and Montana Poet Laureate Tami Halland. Each student creates a portfolio of poems. The program culminates with a poetry reading for students and parents. AWB publishes an anthology of poems from these young authors.
After School and Summer Art Classes AWB provides two, six week after school art instruction sessions for elementary school students. The free after school classes on sculpture, print making, drawing and painting will be offered in three elementary schools this year with hopes of continued expansion in the future. The summer school art program is offered to K through 8th grade students. The classes are broken into three groups based on age. Classes are taught four days per week for six weeks. All classes are fully funded by AWB.
AWB Standout Students Look for this monthly feature in the Billings Gazette which highlights exceptional students in the arts, music and writing. The students are nominated by their teachers using the following criteria: achievement in visual arts, performing arts, or creative writing, academic excellence, and active volunteer work. They each receive a $100 scholarship from AWB.
Guest Artist Program The AWB Guest Artist program, directed by Philip Aaberg, creates opportunities for students to experience concerts and classroom instruction by nationally recognized, award winning, performing artists. In 2013, Guest Artists Tracy Silverman and Philip Aaberg performed for, instructed, and mentored over 6,000 students in the schools during their stay. These visits are fully funded by AWB and are encouraging and inspiring to young musicians.
Music Specialist AWB provides music specialists to compliment and support classroom teachers. Specialists include Montana State University music department faculty as well as area professionals. Specialists provide classroom and after school instruction with specific instruments and genre of music.
Loaned instrument program AWB supports the importance of quality instruments for students. High quality instruments are easier to play, sound better, and last for decades. AWB purchases instruments and places them in the schools’ loaned instrument program. In turn, kids who would not otherwise be able to afford a quality instrument are provided an AWB loaned instrument.
Community Support is Critical
We need community support – we need your support. Please get involved and make a difference. Help us make sure that arts education is available to all, not just to those who can afford it. Arts Without Boundaries Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, EIN 36-4702281.
AWB Board of Directors