March 2015
topArts Learning Newsletter
This online newsletter from the Arts Learning Department at the Arizona Commission on the Arts provides relevant, current and important information from the local, regional and national Arts Learning and Teaching Artist fields.
Join us for the 2015 Arizona Poetry Out Loud State Finals
The Arizona Commission on the Arts is proud to present the 10th annual Arizona Poetry Out Loud State Finals. This year over 11,000 students in 47 schools in communities throughout Arizona participated in this national poetry recitation competition. On March 12, 2015 , the top three students from each region will compete for the opportunity to represent Arizona in the National finals in Washington, D.C. The event will take place at the Herberger Theater Center in Phoenix and is free and open to the public.


This year's state finalists are:


Northern Region

Jessica Han - Coconino High School (Flagstaff)

Adriana Hurtado - Tri-City College Prep (Prescott)

Courtney Hale - St. Michael Indian School (St. Michaels) 


Central Region

Hunter Hazelton - Betty Fairfax High School (Laveen)
Kyrah Berthiaume - McClintock High School (Tempe)
Oluwatosin Babarinde - Brophy College Preparatory (Phoenix)


Southern Region

Lena Blackmon - University High School (Tucson)
Caitlin McCormick - The Gregory School (Tucson) 

Zaskia Villa - Nogales High School (Nogales) 


Click here to learn more
Photo courtesy of University of Arizona Poetry Center
Apply Now for Arts Learning Grants

The application deadline for Arts Learning Grants from the Arizona Commission on the Arts is coming up on Thursday, March 19, 2015. These grants provide matching funds for quality arts learning projects which support lifelong learning in, through and/or about the arts. Projects may take place in a variety of settings with learners of any age. Schools, school districts and nonprofit social service/community organizations are encouraged to apply.


Click here to learn more
Fine Arts or Career Ed for Arizona College Admission? 

The Arizona Legislature is currently considering a bill that would allow Arizona high school students to substitute a credit of career or technical education for the fine arts credit currently required for admission into Arizona's three state universities. A recent Arizona Republic article takes a closer look at the bill.


Click here to learn more
New Arts + Literacy Standards = Opportunity
In their recent magazine edition, the National Association of Elementary School Principals discuss the intersection of arts-integration, college- and career-ready standards, and pre-K-3.

Community Arts Gathering: March 14-18, 2015 ?Ajo, AZ

Presented by the International Sonoran Desert Alliance, the Community Arts Gathering will offer five days of exciting performances, presentations, workshops and exhibitions of work by community artists from around the country and Mexico. This convening will provide an opportunity for national and international dialogue on socially engaged practice and community based arts.


Click here to learn more

Creative Aging Summit: March 13, 2015 

Join the Arizona Commission on the Arts and the Mesa Arts Center for Arizona's first-ever Creative Aging SummitThrough dynamic presentations, facilitated dialogue and hands-on learning sessions, attendees will explore the potential of the arts to help older adults remain dynamic members of society, to support older adults with cognitive or physical disabilities, to give meaning and purpose to later life, and more. 


Click here to learn more
Excellence in Theatre Education Tony Award
Nomination Deadline: March 31, 2015 

This award recognizes a K-12 theatre educator in the U.S. who embodies the highest standards of the profession. Nominees must be current teachers at an accredited elementary, middle or high school or community theater organization in the United States.


Click here to learn more

Arts Integration Solutions Seeks Professional Development Facilitators 

Arizona-based Arts Integration Solutions (AiS) and its partner ThrivinGroup (TG) are growing their pool of professional facilitators to go into schools and provide professional development for teachers across the country. This call is open to teaching artists or arts educators throughout Arizona.


Click here to learn more 

2015 Community Arts Education Leadership Institute
Application Deadline: April 9, 2015 

The Leadership Institute provides an intensive, transformative experience through which current and aspiring leaders in the field of community arts education will advance their skills by engaging with top leadership trainers and practitioners.


Click here to learn more

Encourage Creativity Advocate Tools 
Developed by Americans for the Arts, Encourage Creativity: Teach the Arts is a suite of tools and resources to help you create a powerful message that contains both a story and data to more effectively convey the importance of arts education to our school and community leaders.  

Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture Arts Learning Grants
Deadline: March 23, 2015 
The Arts & Culture Learning Partnership Grant focuses on partnerships and collaborations by Arts Organizations that promote lifelong learning in the arts. Projects can serve youth, adults, seniors, or intergenerational groups.

College Board Award for Excellence and Innovation in the Arts
Deadline: April 13, 2015 

These annual awards recognize and celebrate the achievements of arts initiatives for students in grades 6-12 that promote learning and creativity in exemplary and innovative ways.


Click here to learn more
Strengthening Schools through Arts Partnerships Call for Proposals 
Letter of Interest Deadline: April 16, 2015
This grant program supports substantive school/ community partnerships that implement initiatives aimed at effecting change in low performing schools by strengthening teaching and learning in arts education and/or arts integration. 
Click here to learn more.

Feel free to send us your comments, suggestions or a story idea you'd like to see in the next issue. Email:
To learn more about our programs and services at the Arizona Commission on the Arts, visit
Alex Nelson
Director of Arts Learning

Patrick Fanning
Arts Learning and Special Projects Coordinator

417 West Roosevelt Street 
Phoenix AZ 85003-1326  
tel     (602) 771-6501
fax     (602) 256-0282

Stay Connected

Like us on Facebook   Follow us on Twitter   Subscribe to our Blog