WMA Receives $5,000 ASCA Grant

WMA receives $5,000 ASCA grant for digital learning

DOTHAN, Alabama – January 30, 2018 – The Wiregrass Museum of Art (WMA) is
pleased to announce it has received grant funding in the amount of $5,000 from the
Alabama State Council on the Arts (ASCA). The money will be used to support the
implementation of technology aids for art education programming, to include the
creation and digital publication of an online curriculum based on visual art, the
production of educational videos for distance learning, and the use of in-gallery tablets
as exhibition components.

The online curriculum will consist of lesson plans based on works of art from WMA’s
permanent collection, including instructional videos for teachers to better learn the
process of presenting the material to their students. Currently, there are five
interdisciplinary plans available to teachers free of cost on the museum’s website,
each based on Alabama Learning Exchange standards, with plans to develop 15
more.

“The Alabama State Council on the Arts is very pleased to support the work that the
Wiregrass Museum is doing for classroom teachers in our schools. This project of
developing online resources is exactly the kind of project we are hoping many arts
organizations across the state will consider. In order to provide quality arts education to
all Alabama students, we must have strong partnerships between schools and arts
organizations. The resources being developed at the Wiregrass Museum are high
quality and standards based, and support learning in many subject areas,” said
Diana Green, ASCA Arts in Education Program Manager.

In addition to the online lesson plans, WMA will use the grant funding to explore and
develop virtual field trips, along with other virtual-learning opportunities, to be available
on the museum’s website. Virtual field trips, in particular, are a valuable resource for
rural students who may be unable to travel to an art museum, bringing the in-person
museum experience into the classroom.

“This is a critical step in the museum’s plans for providing lifelong learning opportunities
to our community. Our existing student tour programs provide valuable experiences for
K-12 students, teaching them important skills in creative problem solving and critical
thinking, but we know providing these additional educator resources will contribute to
the larger conversation of workforce readiness for our students,” said WMA Director
and Curator Dana Marie Lemmer.

WMA will also purchase video and production equipment to film distance learning
videos to include artist interviews, gallery walks with museum staff and docents, and
instructional videos to explore temporary exhibitions. Additionally, the ASCA grant will
allow WMA to add technology aids like tablets to its galleries to display interactive
video, providing an opportunity for students and other guests to learn more about the
art and artists they see during their museum visit. The tablets will also be used by
museum staff to track visitor statistics.

“The availability of these digital resources and lesson plans will aid educators, many of
whom are not dedicated art teachers, in meeting designated art standards each year.
This is a big step for us to provide needed resources to our area, across many
platforms,” said Lemmer.

About the Alabama State Council on the Arts

The Mission of the Alabama State Council on the Arts is to enhance the quality of life
and economic vitality for all Alabamians by providing support for the state’s diverse
and rich artistic resources.

The Alabama State Council on the Arts is the official state arts agency of Alabama.

The staff of the Council, directed by Al Head, administers the grants programs and
provides financial assistance in arts planning and programming. The Council receives
its support through an annual appropriation from the Alabama Legislature and funding
from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

About the Wiregrass Museum of Art

The Wiregrass Museum of Art inspires a lifelong appreciation for the visual arts by
providing innovative educational programs that engage diverse audiences through the
collection and exhibition of quality works.

Since its founding in 1988, WMA has offered educational programs, nationally
acclaimed art exhibitions and community events throughout the year. Its Board of
Trustees guides the long-term vision and strategic goals, while its members, the City of
Dothan, the Houston County Commission, and grant funding provide the resources
needed to fulfill its mission. Because of the scarcity of art education in schools, the
WMA Board of Trustees and staff have the responsibility to provide quality, accessible
exhibitions and to reach out into the community through art education efforts. WMA fills
crucial cultural needs in the Wiregrass area.

Contact:
Lara Kosolapoff-Wright
Communications Manager, WMA
334.794.3871, Ext. 27
lara@wiregrassmuseum.org

Youth Art Education Policy

Outside of tours, family days, and open house events, individuals who are not enrolled in a class are not allowed in WMA classrooms except by written permission of the Executive Director. Parents may not join children in the classroom during instruction times in order to ensure an atmosphere conductive to creativity. It is important to limit the number of adults to keep the focus on the kids, their learning, and to accommodate limited seating in the studio. Parents are welcome to stay in the museum during class but must remain outside of the classroom during instruction time.

Museum educators are experienced in creating positive learning environments for all ages and are required to go through a background check to ensure the safety of our students. Parents and guardians are encouraged to visit the studio at the end of class to see what their child has created. All docents and volunteers working with children are also required to go through background checks.

Thank you for understanding our policy and priority on the safety and well-being of participating students.

Throughout the year, WMA will host “Meet the Educator” days where parents and their children can come to the classroom to meet the instructor before beginning classes and camps. 2019’s schedule is as follows: January 30 from 4pm-6pm, May 29 from 4pm-6pm, and August 28 from 4pm-6pm.

Refund Policy

The Wiregrass Museum of Art may cancel any class with insufficient enrollment; students will be notified and given a full refund. If a student withdraws at least 1 week before the class begins, he/she will be refunded for the full cost of the class. If a student withdraws 24 hours before the class begins, he/she will be refunded for half the cost of the class. There are no refunds after the start date of class, and membership fees are nonrefundable. Students are not enrolled until complete payment is received.