ETHS Partnership Provides Resource for Creative Expression and Wellbeing
October 13, 2021 3:20pm CT
An ETHS student creates garden artwork.
Through partnerships with community organizations, Evanston Township High School is providing students with multiple opportunities to get support and engage in mindfulness practices.
Open Studio Project provides a welcoming environment to create art for personal growth, social emotional learning (SEL), and community wellbeing. Their SEL Art Curriculum is available to ETHS students and staff throughout the school year in response to the COVID pandemic.
“Students learn to manage feelings of stress and impulse control, be more fully present, and be reflective problem solvers,” said Sarah Laing, executive director of Open Studio Project. “The pandemic has been overwhelming on many levels. This art space gives them a chance to address social justice issues, fear and anxiety, grief and sadness, among other complex feelings.”
The Open Studio Project program is available on campus during the lunch hour multiple days a week, as well as after school on Mondays and at Wildkit Academy. Teaching artists and art therapists are on hand to help students gain a sense of belonging and connection through creative expression.
ETHS students creating collage artwork.
“This program provides a good way to vent creative thoughts,” said freshman Connor Hill. “The school day can be stressful, especially for students who may not know a lot of others. And it’s nice to have a place to go with no pressure.”