Arts Education

Arts Education is a critical component in the development of the whole child. Creating art engages the students’ mind and helps to develop all aspects of thinking. Our children will need the skills afforded through the arts to be leaders in the fast paced 21st century. The arts provide skills that enable students to be creative and fully participated in a global society. Acceptance of all races, ethnic groups and cultures is the foundation for living and working in the 21st century.

Through the study of the Arts children are exposed to a variety of cultures and foster an understanding and appreciation for those cultures.

Technological changes in the past 20 years require a solid understanding of the impact these changes have on the environment and how we learn. Creation in the Arts has also transformed dramatically in the past generation and the use of technology has given a greater access to more children to explore and create art.

Stimulating arts experiences at each phase of a child’s development fosters pride in artistic achievement and leads to the enhancement of personal uniqueness and recognition of the uniqueness of others. The arts add a unique dimension to the written and spoken language of a society. The arts experience sparks and nurtures creative development, initiates and hones technical skills and provides numerous opportunities for critical thinking. The arts experience heightens sensitivity to oneself and others; stimulates personal expression; and promotes a progressive and positive self-image.

A strong arts education promotes the skills children need to be successful.  Exposure to art education promotes self-directed learning, improves school attendance and sharpens critical and creative skills.  Involvement in the arts is associated with gains in math, reading, cognitive ability, critical thinking, and verbal skill.  Arts learning can also improve motivation, concentration, confidence, and teamwork.

At Sussex Avenue Renew, we offer a variety of programs to support arts education so the students can become well-rounded individuals.


Music and the Brain

Music and the Brain (MATB) offer students the tools to learn to read and play music through classroom keyboard instruction. Music has a significant effect on the way our brains develop and function. When children receive sequential music instruction, it can impact their proficiency in language, reading, math and cognition.  Music and the Brain is offered to grades Pre-K to 3.


Guitar Residency

In collaboration with Newark School of the Arts, Christopher Zack will be teaching a guitar residency to Fourth Grade.  This residency will enable students to continue to expand their knowledge in music developed with Music and the Brain.




Mosaic Mural


Alvin Ailey Dance Residency 

Alvin Ailey believed that “dance is for everybody.” He dedicated his company to serve not only as performers, but as teachers and role models to tens of thousands of children each year. Since its founding in 1958, the Ailey organization has honored this commitment to bring dance into the classrooms, communities, and lives of people throughout the world.

Ailey’s Arts In Education & Community Programs (AIE) represents a vital continuation of Alvin Ailey’s original vision. Since 1992, AIE has given over 100,000 young people from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to explore their creative potential while also imparting life skills such as teamwork and self-discipline.  Students in grades 6-8 also take part in a popular Revelations: An Interdisciplinary Approach curriculum, which uses Alvin Ailey’s life and his signature work as an organizing theme for learning about dance, language arts, and social studies.