PHILADELPHIA--()--The Barnes Foundation and PECO today, launched a newly-developed interdisciplinary outreach program for middle school students, putting an innovative twist on arts education. The program, called Crossing Boundaries, begins this month and will provide access to the foundation and its collection for 1,000 middle school students from the School District of Philadelphia. The year-long program incorporates core curriculum areas (history, geography, anthropology) with the study of the Barnes collection.
“We are proud to partner with the Barnes to help local students experience this wonderful art collection in a whole new light”
“We are proud to partner with the Barnes to help local students experience this wonderful art collection in a whole new light,” said Craig Adams, PECO President and CEO. “We join the Barnes in their commitment to making one of the world’s greatest art collections accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds.”
Children from the following area schools will participate in the inaugural program:
- Baldi Middle School in Northeast Philadelphia
- Dimner Beeber Middle School in West Philadelphia
- Feltonville Arts & Sciences Middle School in East Oak Lane
- Hill Freedman Middle School in West Oak Lane
- Logan Hope School in West Philadelphia
- James Martin School in Port Richmond
- St. Francis De Sales in Southwest Philadelphia
- Stetson Charter School in Kensington
- Universal Vare Charter in South Philadelphia
- Wagner Middle School in North Philadelphia
- Warren G. Harding Middle School in Hunting Park
- Wordsworth Academy in Northwest Philadelphia
Free admission, busing, and teaching materials are provided to participating classrooms.
Derek Gillman, Executive Director and President of the Barnes Foundation said, “We are extremely grateful to PECO for their very generous and thoughtful support of this important new educational program developed by the educators at the Barnes. Our hope is to spark an appreciation for art and to demonstrate, using our diverse collection that creativity comes from all cultures and across time. Connecting art to history, geography and anthropology in this way will help to give context to core curriculum areas, which are key to academic success.”
As part of the Crossing Boundaries program, seventh graders will learn about African sculpture traditions and observe the influence of African sculpture on the innovative work of European modern artists. Eighth graders use The Barnes’ unique ensemble displays to analyze art across geographic regions and experiment with Navajo traditions through storytelling and weaving activities.
Students in both grades participate in two in-classroom lessons and visit the Barnes Foundation to explore the art they have studied.
With a principal focus on math, science and environmental education, PECO supports educational programs that encourage students from all backgrounds to stay in school, develop their talents and continue their education beyond high school. Through partnerships with organizations like Philadelphia Academies, ArtsRising, Anti-defamation League, and The Barnes, PECO is focusing on programs that help expand learning opportunities for children and support a well-rounded education.
PECO’s partnership with The Barnes includes “Free First Sundays at The Barnes,” a program that provides free admission, family entertainment and informative seminars for visitors. Each month, PECO introduces new themes and entertain new audiences at the museum.
Based in Philadelphia, PECO is an electric and natural gas utility subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC). PECO serves 1.6 million electric and 494,000 natural gas customers in southeastern Pennsylvania and employs about 2,400 people in the region. PECO delivered 82.1 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 38.1 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in 2011. Founded in 1881, PECO is one of the Greater Philadelphia Region's most active corporate citizens, providing leadership, volunteer and financial support to numerous arts and culture, education, environmental, economic development and community programs and organizations.
About the Barnes Foundation
The Barnes Foundation was established by Albert C. Barnes in 1922 to "promote the advancement of education and the appreciation of the fine arts and horticulture." The Barnes holds one of the finest collections of post-impressionist and early modern paintings, with extensive holdings by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Cézanne, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Henri Rousseau, Amedeo Modigliani, Chaim Soutine and Giorgio de Chirico, as well as American masters Charles Demuth, William Glackens, Horace Pippin, and Maurice Prendergast, old master paintings, important examples of African sculpture and Native American ceramics, jewelry and textiles, American paintings and decorative arts, and antiquities from the Mediterranean region and Asia. The Barnes Foundation's Art and Aesthetics programs engage a diverse array of audiences. These programs, occurring at the Philadelphia campus, online, and in Philadelphia communities, advance the mission through progressive, experimental, and interdisciplinary teaching and learning.