Arts Horizons, Inc.

Funded in March, 2007: $50000 for 2 years
Dana funds will be used for Arts Horizons' Special-Needs Professional Development Initiative, a two-year professional development training model for special-needs teaching artists.  The first year of professional development will include informational sessions on Autism Spectrum Disorders, designing and implementing curriculum units, creating a safe and nurturing environment, and working with educators to facilitate an artist-in-residence program that meets the needs of their classroom.  Following the professional development sessions, teaching artists will be paired with master teaching artists to accrue in-school practicum experience consisting of 20 forty-five minute sessions and a planning meeting with educators. Year 2 will introduce teaching artist training to other special-needs groups such as emotionally disturbed and multi-disabled. Recognizing that environment plays an important role, these residencies will follow a multi-modal/multi-disciplinary/sensory integrated arts approach. The overarching goal of the Initiative is to train a cadre of teaching artists to provide an arts-enriched learning experience in special-needs classrooms.