THE DES MOINES REGISTER ARTICLE: TEACHING ART

February 2, 2014

Holly McQueen/The Des Moines Register

Teaching artist Jill Wells, of Des Moines' south side, assists Hla Paing, 9, of Des Moines, as he creates a freestyle painting of a tank during the After School Arts Program (ASAP) at McKinley Elementary School, Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013. McKinley Elementary School after school kids have the opportunity to learn from teaching artists during ASAP for the seven week program. There are two groups of 10 students working with teaching artist/painter Jill Wells, of Des Moines' south side, pictured, and Capoeira teachers Julio Arruda Dos Santos and Holly Sells, of Des Moines' Beaverdale neighborhood, who teach the Brazilian art form. ASAP connects third through sixth grade students in Des Moines with enriching arts experiences, and ASAP helps them tap into their inner artistic talents and broaden their knowledge of the arts. Students are recommended for ASAP by their school's teachers and fine arts teachers. ASAP has connected students in the Des Moines area with teaching artists from painting, ceramics, drumming, poetry, photography and dance. Wells' students were working on creating a mural of the periodic table of elements where each student creates a painting of one of the elements on a canvas to be included in the whole mural. "It fuses together arts and sciences," said Wells about the project.

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