Arts education can expand creativity, teach diversity, build community and preserve cultural traditions. The arts can enhance learners’ abilities and enrich their understanding of the world. The St. Thomas–Elgin Public Art Centre supports arts education activities for all ages in schools and in communities. Our programs create artistic, participatory and meaningful opportunities for learners.
Our mandate is, ”to encourage and promote the appreciation of the visual arts in St. Thomas and Elgin County, through exhibitions, educational programs and the preservation of a permanent collection”.
The Ontario grade 1-8 curriculum states, “Participation in the arts and learning about the arts can also broaden students’ horizons in various ways. Through study of the arts, students learn about some of the diverse artistic practices, both traditional and contemporary, of a variety of cultures. They learn that they are part of a living and changing culture. They also learn to appreciate the similarities and differences among the various forms of artistic expression of people around the world. The arts offer students unique opportunities to engage in imaginative and innovative thought and action and to develop the ability to communicate and represent their thoughts, feelings, and ideas in numerous ways”.
“Learning through the arts fosters integration of a student’s sensory, cognitive, emotional, and motor capacities. For example, hands-on materials and activities can challenge students to move from the concrete to the abstract, and students can develop ideas while working through the stages of the creative process. The arts can be enjoyable and fulfilling, but they are also intellectually rigorous disciplines involving the use of complex symbols (e.g., choreography, gesture, icons, musical notation) to communicate meaning and understanding. Many of these symbols are rooted in a particular social, historical, and cultural context and therefore may have meanings that are different from what one knows from one’s own culture and time”.
This is why the St. Thomas–Elgin Public Art Centre offers, to our educators and teachers of St. Thomas and Elgin County, the opportunity to LEARN, IMAGINE, EXPLORE, and PARTICIPATE in the Arts, through our FREE educational tours! We thank our Partners in Education for their kind sponsorship of these classes and making it possible to leave no child behind!
Kinsmen of St. Thomas
Doug Tarry Homes
Lions Club of Port Stanley
Optimist Club of St. Thomas
Dr. and Mrs Wood
City of St. Thomas
County of Elgin
Elgin Contracting and Restoration
For more information and to book your tour please contact Sherri Howard at the Art Centre! 519 631-4040