Our Philosophy

Along with Arts Corps’ values, practice and racial justice work, there are key beliefs that have shaped our programs:

  • Teaching artists are key resources and providers of high quality arts education experience for youth. Arts Corps places high value on the role of teaching artists as professional educators and practicing artists. They are our direct contact with the youth and guide students through the creative process. We emphasize that their primary focus is on the voices and growth of the youth. We have shaped our program to include ample professional development for teaching artists, mentoring for newer teaching artists and competitive wages.
  • Safe, supportive spaces are essential. Teaching artists actively work to create supportive environments for youth to promote active learning, skill building and healthy relationships. Teaching artists model creative risk-taking, promote the expression of all ideas, encourage less-vocal youth to speak up and more outgoing students to step back and make room for everyone. Students are engaged in the class, participate in making choices and planning, and reflect.
  • Arts Corps works in partnership with communities. Each site we work with has different needs, goals and youth. In order to develop and deliver the best quality class for each program partner, we must work collaboratively with them to develop shared goals and agreements.
  • Programs must be continuously evaluated. Without a solid system for ongoing reflection, communication and feedback from participants, teaching artists, and partner staff, our program will not evolve and not reach its fullest potential of impacting youth. Arts Corps conducts a rigorous evaluation each year, the process and findings of which help us measure the effectiveness of our programs.

To read our most recent annual report and see how our philosophy is implemented, click here

To watch a short documentary produced by the Seattle Arts Education Consortium on creative habits of mind in practice, click here: “Powerful Learning through the Arts.”