What is Visual Arts Education in Jeffco?
Visual Arts programs are an integral part of the core curriculum offered at every K-12 Jeffco public school. Jeffco Schools provide high quality instruction, emphasizing a balance of studio art (creating), critique and analysis, and art history. The curriculum students receive is based on the Colorado Academic Standards - Visual Arts, in drawing, painting, printmaking, mixed media, digital media, sculpture, and ceramics.
Why is Visual Arts Education important for students?
Visual Arts are essential. They teach students innumerable lessons - practice makes perfect, small differences can have large effects, collaboration leads to creativity. Visual arts also teach children that there are several paths to take when approaching problems and that all problems can have more than one solution.
Meet Gregory III!
Meet Gregory III! He is a Labrador/Golden Retriever cross and was born on March 1, 2017. Gregory has been trained from the moment he has opened his eyes through the non-profit Canine Companions for Independence. Gregory was carefully bred and professionally trained in over 40 commands across two years by Canine Companions specifically to work with individuals with disabilities. Gregory and Fletcher Miller's school social worker Jenna Ebener, LSW, were matched together in May of 2019 after an in-depth application process and a two-week training in California.
Jenna had dreamed of having a facility dog at Fletcher Miller since 2015. She knew a dog that was highly trained would have a lot of potential in enriching the lives of students with multiple disabilities as well as ensuring that he was emotionally capable of thriving in the busy school environment. Gregory’s calm demeanor, sweet and easy-going temperament, and love of people, especially children seemed to make him a perfect fit for Fletcher Miller. Gregory now has over 100 commands and uses his skills to support Jenna's role as social worker in countless ways, including:
physically interacting with students who cannot reach out to him (e.g. putting his paws up on a medical gurney to greet a student)
participating in games (e.g. Uno, Trouble, Zingo, Hungry Hungry Hippos, blowing bubbles, bowling)
modeling activities and making them more concrete (e.g. driving a power wheelchair trainer, painting, modeling the importance of teeth brushing)
modeling functional communication (e.g. shaking his head yes and no, raising his paw, speaking, making choices, using a communication system)
providing and modeling sensory regulation (e.g. laying on students' laps, unrolling a yoga mat and doing yoga poses)
easing difficult transitions by being a motivator for students on community outings (e.g being walked by a student on outings)
Gregory III At Work, Painting