Placeworks Arts Outreach Now Taking Applications

Placeworks Arts Outreach is now taking applications for fall semester programs. Placeworks is free to rural districts and teachers, and is supported by the Community Foundation of the Ozarks’ Rural Schools Partnership and the Coover Place-Based Education Grantmaking Program of Commerce Trust.

Applications will be accepted through 5 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2012. Teachers can download, print and complete an application by going to and scrolling down to the Placeworks section. Instructions for returning the application are included on the form.

Taught by Teaching Artists Kate Baird and Julie Taylor Jones, Placeworks is an arts-outreach program that promotes learning through visual arts exploration. The program is interdisciplinary in nature, meaning that work in the visual arts explicitly supports learning in another curricular area — language arts, social studies, science or math — with an emphasis on place-based learning, meaning the school and its surrounding community and area influence the lessons. Placeworks offers a menu of program options, which may be adapted to suit the needs of the participating classroom. Professional teaching artists and all project materials are provided at no cost to the school.

“Placeworks gives kids a chance to think like artists by asking them to come up with ideas, solve problems and learn through hands-on experimentation,” Baird said. “Creative kids are one of the most valuable resources a community has, and Placeworks is a way for schools and communities to cultivate that resource.”

“Placeworks is a great way for rural teachers to supplement their existing curriculum by providing additional resources, support, and supplies to create a customized interdisciplinary experience,” Jones added.

Baird has worked as a teaching artist at the Guggenheim Museum, the Kentler International Drawing Space and the Rubin Museum of

Art in New York, as well as in Springfield. Jones is a veteran Ozarks arts educator with experience exhibiting rural students’ art as well as the Placeworks program.

All members of the Rural Schools Partnership are welcome to apply for the Placeworks Arts Initiative. For a list of member districts, please go to For more information contact Julie Leeth at, or e-mail