Since 1997, Fleisher’s Community Partnerships in the Arts (CPA) program has brought creative art-making experiences to children and youth in public schools and community after-school programs. Fleisher’s trained teaching artists partner with public schools, community organizations, and social service agencies to create arts-integrated residencies that enrich and enhance students’ learning. Projects enable students to develop studio and technical skills in the visual arts, and are culturally relevant and community-oriented.

In Schools

In schools, Fleisher provides arts-integrated residencies that incorporate a range of media, techniques, and technology in projects built on classroom subjects in math, science, language arts, and social studies. Teaching artists collaborate with teachers and principals to ensure creative projects complement teaching and learning in the classroom, respond to the needs and interests of students, and fit into the School District of Philadelphia’s curriculum frameworks. Teaching artists are typically in residence in schools twice weekly for 90-minute sessions over 10 weeks.

In Neighborhoods

In South Philadelphia after-school and summer programs, the CPA program provides a valuable artistic component. Teaching artists work closely with program administrators to develop residencies that respond to the needs and interests of children and youth, while developing art- making skills, techniques, and introducing young people to a variety of materials. Teaching artists are typically in residence in schools twice weekly for 90-minute sessions over four to 10 weeks.

Recent Project Highlights

  • Fictional States with Andrew Jackson School:
    Kay Healy, a past Wind Challenge artist, furthered the exploration of geography in Ms. Rafferty’s third-grade class by leading students in the creation of a puzzle of the continental United States and the development of fictional states of their own design. After learning more about artists who express themselves through collage, the students created postcards, maps, fabric flags, and collages to represent their imagined locales.

  • Kites and Weather with Southwark School:
    As third-grade students at Southwark School learned about weather, climate, and atmosphere, artist Jim Grilli helped them construct kites from simple materials, including straws, tape, ribbon, and tissue paper. The completed kites enhanced the students’ understanding of wind speed and direction, bolstering their earlier lesson on weather vanes and anemometers. In addition, using cotton balls, students crafted representations of cumulus, stratus, and cirrus clouds and adorned their artwork with relevant facts.

  • Darkroom Photography with George McCall School:
    With artist Joan Oh, eighth grade students experienced the complex process of darkroom photography development. Oh’s lesson plans built on the classroom’s science curricula, including the properties of light. Students gained hands-on experience in how chemical processes work in developing photographs, and created their own pinhole cameras. The residency included trips to Fleisher to use its professional darkroom studio equipment.

Community Partners in the Arts is Made Possible in Part By

  • Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation

  • Christopher Ludwick Foundation

  • Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation