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Whether students are learning visual arts, music, theater, or dance, DCPS focuses on how art can be used to discuss themes and support discovery. While art curriculum typically focuses on physical mediums, digital is becoming an increasingly important way of creating and sharing art. Using the free Adobe Spark app and other Adobe Creative Cloud apps, DCPS brings digital art into the classroom and provides students with new ways to express and share themselves.
Video is another important way of sharing art digitally. In celebration of Black History Month, the Wilson Jazz Strings group at Wilson High School performed an arrangement of This Little Light of Mine. Each performer recorded their own part at home. Their music teacher, Paul Phifer, edited the performances together using Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe Premiere Rush. The video is intercut with photographs of notable black politicians, scientists, entertainers, athletes, and thinkers from throughout American history, further emphasizing the Black History Month message. (Source: blog.adobe.com)
Digital opens the doors for more ways to share art with the community through virtual experiences. DCPS puts on an annual art showcase to highlight some of the work done by its students. In 2021, DCPS created an innovative virtual festival known as Rep My City, in which students were asked to reimagine the future of arts education in DC. In collaboration with partners including Hirshhorn’s Art Lab and Genesis Steam, students curated artwork into virtual reality showcases. Students, families, and the public were then invited into virtual rooms to view the digital showcase online. Visitors could choose an avatar, “walk” around the virtual gallery, and discuss their experiences with fellow visitors.
While Adobe applications help create shareable virtual projects, teachers across DCPS also use Adobe Spark to create presentations and videos for their lessons. When the pandemic sent students home, teachers quickly collaborated to create a series of virtual lessons to help students feel engaged and connected. DCPS art teachers created a video using Adobe Spark discussing fashion, transformation, and self-expression. The Make You Mark Mask lesson then invited students to conduct research on artists and make their own mask, combining art and expression with timely, practical advice. DCPS uploaded the video to its Canvas learning management system, but also shared it on YouTube and even on a local television station to maximize reach to all students. (Source: blog.adobe.com)