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ODU and the Y on Granby to Partner in Art Education Project for Children

Photo of early childhood artEarly childhood art

Old Dominion University and The Y on Granby are partnering on a community engagement project that will strengthen the lives of children and families through art instruction.

The Y on Granby opened in May with a dedicated space for arts and cultural development. The joint project will include two classes for elementary and middle school students that will be taught by ODU art education majors. Fall and spring semester classes will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays for six weeks at the YMCA branch, which is located at 2901 Granby St.

The sessions begin Sept. 24 and run through Oct. 22. Children ages 6-9 will attend class from 5:30-6:30 p.m., while those ages 10-12 will meet from 6:30-7:30 p.m. The cost is $20 for members and $40 for prospective members.

ODU art education students Cynthia Ponter and Jessica Ray were selected from a competition to teach the classes and will be supervised by an instructor as part of the university's ARTS 367, Cooperative Education course. Lessons will involve a range of activities, including: drawing, painting, mixed media, cartooning, mural painting, collage, printmaking, sculpture-paper maché or ceramics, and computer arts and animation.

"We are thrilled about this partnership and excited for the kids that will benefit from deeper engagement with the arts, under the supervision and guidance of passionate graduating seniors from ODU," said Anthony Walters, executive director at The Y on Granby.

Richard Nickel, the director of art education at ODU, said service learning has long been an important aspect of teacher training for art education students at ODU.

"Lessons are developed collaboratively through active research and ODU students engage young learners by viewing and responding to works of art and engaging in meaningful dialogues," Nickel said. "The new partnership with the YMCA will support a continual, long-range program to train students under the supervision of master instructor Kellie Elliott, who is an award winning Norfolk Public Schools art teacher and ODU alumna."

About the YMCA of South Hampton Roads

The YMCA of South Hampton Roads is a nonprofit, community-based health and human services organization that serves over 250,000 children and families each year. More than 28 percent of those families receive financial assistance through the Open Doors program, which is funded by the generosity of donors, to help them reach their full potential in spirit, mind and body. The Y's doors are open to people of all ages, backgrounds, abilities and incomes.

To register for classes, visit the YMCA of South Hampton Roads website.

For more information, contact Anthony Walters, executive director of the Y On Granby, at 757-965-2322 or by email at awalters@ymcashr.org.