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Surviving and Thriving during COVID-19

The COVID-19 global pandemic has disrupted everyone’s lives and our arts education practices. The Arts Education Alliance of the Bay Area sees this as a time to step up our activities to keep our constituents connected by:

There is a flood of information filling our inboxes and it keeps changing daily. There are several organizations that are doing a great job of compiling links and resources, so we won’t try to duplicate their efforts. Californians for the Arts has a comprehensive page that they are updating daily. We also recommend the list of resources collected by Intersection for the Arts. See below for information about online learning, financial survival, and advocacy.


Online learning Schools are closed. Kids are home. Parents are flummoxed. We know that the arts can help everyone handle stress and trauma. We also know that the arts are an essential component of unstructured, inquiry-based learning. Many of you are already stepping in to provide new online lessons. We’ll compile a list of online resources created by our members that we can share with the community. Use this form to add your lessons to our list. Please add your scheduled online lessons to our arts education community calendar. Teaching art online While online learning can be very accessible for some, not everyone has the necessary technology at home and not all website are accessible for all users. Many students may have access to phones, but not computers. Some may have no internet devices at all. Youth in Arts in Marin and the Museum of Children’s Art in Oakland have been putting together art packs for youth, but these efforts are difficult to scale and fund.

This article, “Accessible Teaching In The Time Of Covid-19” provides checklists to make sure your websites are as accessible as possible for all learners. CREATE CA has compiled more resources for educators. The Art of Education is hosting free weekly webinars for art teachers. ⚠⚠⚠⚠⚠⚠ Beware of “Zoom bombing.” Our zoom meetings can be vulnerable to malicious intruders. If you are hosting meetings with youth, it is important to follow recommended security guidelines. Read ”How to stop trolls from taking over your Zoom call” from The Verge.

Online community As artists of all ages make art at home, we can use social media to find community. CREATE CA continues to advocate for arts education for everyone. We can all participate in their #CreateAtHome campaign on social media. They've selected some great resources to help families make art.

Creative-Generation is encouraging everyone to #KeepMakingArt. Read about their strategy and dig into their toolkit here.

The California Alliance for Arts Education is sharing regular prompts on social media to promote that we continue #ArtsEdAtHome. Follow along on Twitter and Facebook. Chapter 510 is celebrating national poetry month with prompts for a #poemeverydayinapril.


You can also play with Youth in Arts with #YIACre8tes, and other artists with #DrawingTogether.

The U.S. Department of Arts and Culture (not a government agency) guides us with “Community Care in the Time of Coronavirus."

Financial survival Income is being disrupted across the board, so this is going to be difficult for arts education organizations, and especially so for teaching artists who are losing gigs. Organizations that can afford it are finding ways ways to keep their teaching artists employed. They can develop online lessons, work on curriculum for future classes, and have online meetings. Resource lists for individuals:

Resources for organizations:

Advocacy Californians for the Arts COVID-19 resources is tracking state and federal news. Visit their page to find letter templates and action alerts to advocate politically for arts resources. Teaching Artists Guild has created a letter template to use to contact elected officials. We will definitely need to communicate to the government and funders about all the ways that communities are being affected. Keep documenting and telling your stories. Creative Generation has written, A Call To Action For Arts Education Funders In The Wake Of COVID-19 Blog . California Arts Council is gathering data on the impact, please fill out their survey here. Californians for the Arts has an exceptional page of resources, including LETTER TEMPLATE: Artists and Arts Non-profits Need Access to COVID-19 Relief. Americans for the Arts has a Coronavirus Resource and Response Center online with news, updates, and resources. They also have a 5 minute survey to help track the economic impact. Click here to fill that out. And you can join Americans for the Arts for a webinar on Thursday, March 19 at 3:00p, Arts and Culture Sector and the Coronavirus: What we know and how to move forward? American Alliance of Museums released a statement asking people to urge legislation to help museums and nonprofits. We also want to be making our needs clear to our funders. The Nonprofit AF blog argues, “Funders, this is the rainy day you have been saving up for.” We should all be letting our funders know how our organizations are adapting. We will also be looking into ways to provide a unified message to the foundations who support most of the arts education work in the Bay Area.

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