The purpose of this research study is to research the impact of Hartford Performs programs in Hartford Public Schools. We are collaborating with Hartford Performs, a local non-profit that provides arts education programming in Hartford schools, to evaluate the effectiveness and importance of their programs on children’s learning. Hartford Performs programs use arts-based methods to aid learning in classrooms. By bringing teaching artists into the classroom, they use various art-techniques to teach the curriculum in a new creative way. As a team working alongside Hartford Performs, we aim to identify ways in which we can elevate their existing programs to ensure the success of their organization.
Our goal is to demonstrate the impact of arts-based education through Hartford Performs programming. In order to evaluate the impact, we conducted a focus group of teaching artists and interviewing parents to gain a comprehensive understanding of the impact these programs have on Hartford students and insight on programming logistics. Additionally, our community partner Jeanika Browne-Springer gave us a list of teachers and teaching artists’ contact information along with Hartford Performs programming dates that we utilized to make appointments to observe classrooms. We attended classroom observation in different Hartford Public Schools to see how teaching artists use art-based techniques to aid student engagement in the classroom. We used Hartford Performs’ ‘Observation Protocol for student programs’ to evaluate each program we attended in different schools. The forms address program logistics, teacher/teaching artist engagement with students, and notes of the goals accomplished through the program.
This is a Spring 2020 Action Lab Project.