Off the Canvas includes 550 students in Pre-K through 8th Grade. Entirely run by volunteers, the program highlights the benefits students reap from learning about art/craft. Art/craft is all around us, from the clothes you wear, to the building you stand in, to the dish you eat from. The importance of learning to appreciate art/craft early in life is often overlooked and undervalued. It encourages exploration, self-expression, logical thinking, self-esteem, individuality, imagination and creativity. Art/craft teaches children to think openly, create new meaning, be more tolerant of uniqueness, and gives them the self-confidence to take risks.
Once a month, classroom volunteers present a various display of arts and crafts to the class through the use of library books, posters, laptop computers and/or the Promethean board. After the presentation, the volunteers provide a hands-on art or craft project that coincides with what the students have learned. At the end of the year, we hold Off the Canvas Live! a fully interactive night of the arts which showcases the art/craft projects students have created throughout the year.