By Dr. Marciene Mattleman
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Maria, a third grader at a Kensington public school in Philadelphia studying American Indians made a great clay totem pole. Keith, a 6th grader at a southwest city school, illustrated what he learned in his earth science class by making a clay volcano.
Both Maria and Keith’s schools are among the 250 community-based sites that have partnered with the Clay Studio, bringing the Claymobile, an educational outreach program providing artist educators, materials and tools for six weeks of hands-on activities to K-12 students.
Since 1994, the two Claymobile vans travel daily to some of the neediest neighborhoods where 70% of the students are eligible for free or reduced price lunch and for 95% their first encounter with clay.
The kids create on-site, then their works are fired downtown and returned for display in their schools and at the Clay Studio. At this time of draconian cutbacks, the Claymobile is attempting to keep arts education alive.