From Our Executive Director

Happy Spring! After a vibrant and creative winter, we’re eager to celebrate the season by integrating art and education meaningfully. Our programming and partnerships blend seasonal festivities, environmental awareness, and community service. We’re inspired by ASI staff’s dedication to using art for observing and connecting with nature. Witnessing the diverse projects our students undertake this semester fills us with joy, and we’re excited to see what they’ll discover next.

This Spring, students will be learning about Pura Belpré and making puppets. The incorporation of Belpré’s use of puppetry and personal storytelling as projects for our students adds an interactive and personal touch to the learning experience and is a fantastic way to engage classrooms with literature and art.  

Our students’ use of art to celebrate holidays and create social-emotional connections is both innovative and impactful. From Groundhog Day to the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge Junior Duck Stamp Contest, our students are not only expressing their creativity, but also gaining valuable insights into the importance of environmental conservation. The use of ceramics and clay deepens this connection, enabling tactile expression and a bond with the earth.

Moreover, our MLK Day of Service projects, where volunteers researched musical instruments and students made valentines for senior citizens, reflects a commitment to cultural understanding and community outreach. The positive affirmation posters and game creation further contribute to fostering a positive and collaborative environment. 

Distributing books to students, painting murals at recreation centers, and engaging in service sorting projects showcase a holistic approach to education and community involvement. Our curriculum efforts are making a positive impact on the students and the broader community. As we continue these endeavors, may the creativity and enthusiasm of our students continue to blossom, creating a lasting impact on their education and the community at large.

Warm regards,

How you can make a difference

It’s wonderful to share the impactful work that Art Sphere Inc. is doing to provide free art programs and resources to the community, especially during a time when such opportunities may be limited. Supporting organizations like ours is crucial for the well-being and development of children and families.

For those looking to make a difference and contribute to Art Sphere Inc.’s mission, here are some ways to help:

1. Spread the Word: Share Art Sphere Inc.’s mission and initiatives with your friends, family, and social networks. Word of mouth can be a powerful tool in raising awareness. Engage with Art Sphere Inc. on social media platforms. Like, share, and comment on our posts to help broaden our reach.

2. Donate: Consider making a donation to Art Sphere Inc. Every contribution, no matter the size, can make a meaningful impact. As mentioned, specific donation amounts are highlighted to illustrate how various levels of support can directly benefit the community.

3. Volunteer: If possible, offer your time and skills to support Art Sphere Inc.’s programs. Volunteers can play a vital role in helping with classes, workshops, and events.

4. Corporate Sponsorship: Explore partnerships with local businesses or corporations that may be interested in supporting community initiatives. Corporate sponsorships can provide additional resources and visibility.

Remember, every little bit helps, and collective efforts can lead to positive change. Thank you for the important work you’re doing, and best of luck in continuing to make a difference in the lives of children and families through art!

We have a wonderful diverse set of project handouts that support our curriculum planned for April, May, and June. Each theme provides a unique opportunity for students to explore and express themselves. Heres a brief overview and some ideas for each theme: 

Feel free to adapt and expand on these ideas to suit the specific age group and interests of your students. Enjoy the creative journey!

Connecting Creativity: Exploring Holidays, Wildlife, and Environmental Awareness Through Student Art Projects

Students this semester used art to celebrate holidays and help make social-emotional connections between their actions and environmental awareness with projects like Groundhog Day posters, underground drawings, and 3D tunnels.

They made art to compete in the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge Junior Duck Stamp Contest while learning about the importance of protecting wetlands. Students made artwork about polar bears and penguins as we explored winter themes through our art. Students used clay to further connect with the earth and express themselves.

To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, the arrival of Spring, and the upcoming Easter festivities, students crafted charming leprechauns, clovers, rainbows, and pots of gold. They also created hobbit mushroom villages and vibrant folded eggs featuring cozy homes for chicks and rabbits.

We are distributing $4000 worth of books in our classrooms for students to take home and read in the classroom to reinforce the classroom art projects we teach!

Students in weekend and afterschool classes have been reading graphic novels and making their own illustrated stories and collaborative classroom paper cartoon murals 

This spring, students will be learning about Pura Belpré, an Afro-Puerto Rican educator who served as the first Puerto Rican librarian in New York City and was a writer, collector of folktales, and puppeteer. Students will be reading Planting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré, written by Anika Aldamuy Denise and illustrated by Paola Escobar, in class and making puppets. The incorporation of Belpré’s use of puppetry and personal storytelling as projects for our students to participate in adds an interactive and personal touch to the learning experience and is a fantastic way to engage classrooms with literature and art. 

Students for MLK Day made valentines for senior citizens. They also made positive affirmation posters to uplift classrooms. Together with students, ASI artists designed and painted seven murals at recreation centers to beautify classrooms and hallways and involved students in important service-learning projects that made a big impact on their surroundings and the many building users.

Thank you to all our volunteers who at our MLK Day of Service project researched musical instruments from around the world to add to our website and our in-person music curriculum! 

You can become a member of our staff to help us in the classroom. Read about the experiences of volunteers within our organization, and learn more about how to get involved.

YOU can be a part of Art Sphere’s mission in “Transforming Lives through the Arts.” Art Sphere provides FREE art instruction and supplies to inner-city youth who often have fewer opportunities to take art classes. Here, they learn how to creatively solve problems and express themselves.

Art Sphere Inc. would like to thank the Read By 4th, Philly Book Bank, First Book, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, Philadelphia Cultural Fund, and Penn Treaty Special Services District, and our other supporters for all of their support! We wouldn’t be able to bring impactful free classes to our students without your help, and we hope to continue to make a difference in our underserved communities across Philadelphia. 

Please go and learn how this organization helps to support cultural nonprofits every year in our city.

. . . and that wraps up this edition of the Art Sphere Bulletin. Thank you so much for reading our update this quarter. Be sure to follow us on social media for more fun activities!

We would be honored for you to share our free arts projects by forwarding this email address to your friends, family and colleagues. Let them know they can receive our newsletter by sending a blank message to: