PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The 4th grade class from Elwood School in North Philadelphia recently visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art — part of a wonderful opportunity, Art Speaks, for every single fourth grader in the Philadelphia public schools — to travel to the Museum, the Barnes Foundation, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, or the Institute for Contemporary Art.

For Empowerment Schools, which have been long under-performing, a volunteer comes to the school first to talk about the art. Transportation is no problem because buses are free and when the kids arrive, a docent takes them through talking about the paintings. Afterward, kids write in their journals combining art and literacy.

Years ago, we took our three young children to a Thomas Eakins exhibit and six-year-old Jon ran around not seeming to notice the masterpieces. Months later he asked if doctors always operated in boats.

The operating bay, then surrounded by a small half-wall, reminded him of a boat. That trip started an interest in Eakins which he shared later with his own family. With kids, response isn’t always immediate.

Reported By Dr. Marciene Mattleman, KYW Newsradio

More From CBS Philly

Latest Forecast
Weather App

Watch & Listen LIVE