Many art museums provide lesson plans, traveling trunks and online resources for the schools in their community to explore their collection. A lucky few have devoted teaching staff who travel to those schools and facilitate their own curriculum. The OJAC is fortunate to be of that lucky few. Reflective of our mission of "Art for All," our school outreach program is offered to any school within an hour of the museum, completely free of cost. At each visit, students enjoy books and videos, close viewing and discussion of artworks and artifacts and a connected studio activity. Classroom teachers enjoy TEKS-aligned, cultural and social awareness themes which enrich their existing curriculum and provide their students an opportunity for both critical thinking and creativity. The museum enjoys the chance to inspire a love for visual art (and museums!) in the youngest members of the community it serves.
This Fall Semester, the OJAC brought art experiences to more than 5400 students in their own classrooms. At the end of the school year, these classes will visit the museum on a free field trip to explore the objects and galleries they have been learning about remotely. Looking ahead to the new year we are excited to realize that we will reach more students than any before- and while large numbers can be exciting for small institutions, the real satisfaction comes with the knowledge that this program is an investment in the future of our collection, community and continued mission.