Return to Headlines

COCA's Monthly Arts in Education Newsletter for November 2020

COCA Announcements 
COCA’s Teachable Works
As a complement to COCA’s Outdoor Public Art Directory and Map, we offer specially designed educational resources highlighting our community's public artworks. You’ll find lesson plans that align with state standards in a variety of subject areas including language arts, math, science, social studies, as well as the arts. Click here to explore the materials created for the “Gaines Street Tree Wall.” If you’d like to share a lesson you’ve created that features our local public artwork, please email
Order the arts license plate and let your support show wherever you go.
Purchasing a State of the Arts license plate is an affordable way to make a direct contribution to arts and culture in Leon County.
COCA gets $20 from the sale of each arts tag in Leon County and those funds support arts education programs in our community.
Online events are now a category on our
List all your virtual arts classes, workshops, and more in the "Events" category on our site. 
All online events will be listed and featured in our weekly Monday Tallahassee Arts Guide "This Week" email that goes to over 13,000 individuals. Anyone in the 100-mile radius around Tallahassee can add listings to the Tallahassee Arts Guide.
 Questions? Feel free to contact Amanda Thompson at
Resources for an Online Curriculum
Please share these resources with others and if you've found resources that could help other arts teachers, please email them to Amanda Thompson at 
Click here to visit our Pinterest page for a huge, COCA curated list of creative, educational, and entertaining arts activities in all disciplines. These resources are sure to keep little ones, tweens, and teens learning and growing artistically.
Call for Writers: Rattle Seeks Submissions By Children (Deadline: November 15)
Rattle Seeks Submissions By Children for their annual Young Poets Anthology-poets must be age 15 or younger. Poems may be submitted by the poet, or by the poet's parent/legal guardian, or teacher. Teachers may select at most five students per year and submit on their behalf. Rattle will be selecting up to 20 poems for their publication. More info here.
Driftwood Press Contests (Deadline: Jan. 15)
The In-House Poem Contest features an award of $400, publication, contributor copies, and a featured interview. Those selected who don’t win the grand prize will be called runner-ups, and they’ll receive $50 per poem, publication, a contributor copy, and an interview!
The In-House Short Story Contest features an award of $400, publication, contributor copies, and a featured interview, with the runner-ups receiving $100, publication, a contributor copy, and an interview!
Click here for more.
NEA Big Read Grant (Deadline: Jan. 27)
Guidelines are now available for nonprofit organizations interested in applying for a grant to hold an NEA Big Read project between September 2021 and June 2022. Since 2006, more than 1,600 National Endowment for the Arts Big Read programs have taken place throughout the nation, giving communities the opportunity to come together to read, take part in meaningful discussions, and enjoy book-inspired events. NEA Big Read is presented in collaboration with Arts Midwest. Since the program began in 2006, the National Endowment for the Arts has funded more than 1,600 NEA Big Read programs, providing more than $22 million to organizations nationwide. Click here to learn more.
Black Violin: Intersections
This is a virtual talk and play series focused on the intersection of business, art, and black culture led by creative extremists Kev Marcus and Wil Baptiste of Black Violin. This inclusive course welcomes students from all schools of thought to engage in a more meaningful conversation about race, creativity, and the pursuit of success. Discussions begin with a live performance or demonstration by Black Violin to illustrate the days lesson and to empower students to use their passion and creativity to fuel positive discourse and push social awareness. For more information, contact Corryn Freeman, Vice President of Black Violin Foundation Inc. at 443-538-6615 or Click here for more. 
Arts4All Florida Virtual Classes
Arts4All Florida offers classes in visual, music, dance and movement and the performing arts to students and adults of all abilities. Headquartered at the University of South Florida in the College of Education, Arts4All Florida provides, supports and champions arts education and cultural experiences for and by people with disabilities. The goals for our community-based programs are to encourage personal development, group participation, and camaraderie while teaching creative expression. Classes are led by professional artists/art teachers, certified instructors, and disability experts. Virtual class options have been added to this list of services to meet the needs of the times. Click here for more information about these classes and the links to register.
The Mockingbird Foundation Grant Program
The Mockingbird Foundation, Inc. (“Mockingbird”) offers competitive grants to schools and nonprofit organizations that effect improvements in areas of importance to the Phish fan community. Our programmatic focus is music education for children. Learn more about this opportunity here.
Interactive Academy/FAAE Digital Media Room
The Florida Alliance for Arts Education and the Interactive Academy are making digital online platforms available to the arts community in an effort to restore some of the loss of revenue organizations are experiencing during the COVID 19 outbreak. Learners of all ages will be able to take classes that are streamed to the privacy of your personal Digital Media Room (DMR). Instructional aides such as handouts and quizzes will also be available in the DMR. To learn more about enrolling as a student or offering a live stream as a teacher, click here. 
Professional Development & Artistic Planning Grants (Deadline: Rolling)
Grants are available for organizations to support the professional development needs of Southern presenters, programmers, or curators, strengthen program design, and increase organizational capacity. This funding can support staff's travel expenses to conferences, festivals, exhibitions, workshops, and other professional development opportunities, or artists' travel expenses for onsite planning meetings with presenting organizations. Click here to learn more. 
Awesome Tallahassee (Deadline: Rolling)
Each month Awesome Tallahassee awards a $1,000 grant to people doing awesome things in our community. If you have a great idea for the Tallahassee area apply for a grant today! Click here for more details.  
To learn about other opportunities and resources, visit the Classifieds section of COCA's Tallahassee Arts Guide
Professional Development
Focus 5, Inc. Workshops
Focus 5, Inc. offers a variety of sessions, covering a variety of topics, to help educators at all levels engage and inspire their students. Check out the drama session: Acting Right - Building a Cooperative, Collaborative, Creative Classroom Community Through Drama. For teachers grades k-8, the three hour workshop takes the foundational elements of acting such as concentration, cooperation, and collaboration and creates a structured process, which can become the basis for effective classroom management every day. This engaging, step-by-step approach empowers students to take ownership of and be responsible for their own behavior. Learn how to help students build the skills necessary to establish a sense of self-control, accountability, and team-building in your classroom. This workshop is recommended for any classroom based in active, social, cooperative learning. Click here for more info on this and other workshops. 
FSU Online M.S. in Art Education
Florida State University‘s online degree provides comprehensive knowledge and prepares students to undertake research in the field of art education. It focuses primarily on social justice art education. This masters does not provide certification and is suitable for certified teachers, community or museum art educators, or educators pursuing an alternative track toward certification. The online program is taught by faculty members and provides the rigor of a Florida State University graduate program. Time to a degree takes 6 semesters (sometimes 5 semesters with careful planning). We are here to help ensure that the online coursework fits into your life and schedule. Learn more here.
Around Town
COCA Education Grant
New ONLINE content on Tallahassee Arts Guide 
Check out all the family-friendly, local, virtual offerings including events, classes, workshops, and lessons. Please visit us at to access our resources and to add your own arts-related listings.
Sounds of Tallahassee - Call to Musicians
Vibrant and diverse, creative and innovative - Tallahassee's music community has long been one of our greatest assets. "Sounds of Tallahassee" serves as a portal to the unique musical offerings that make the Big Bend region so special. In partnership with Moose Magnificat Radio and Cat Family Records, COCA offers this auditory adventure. We invite you to be part of "Sounds of Tallahassee," an initiative that promotes area musicians and connects them with new audiences. Any musician living in a 100-mile radius of Tallahassee is eligible for this opportunity. More info here
The 2020 Winter Festival Youth Art Exhibit Online
Nov. 18, 2020 - Feb. 9, 2021
The Winter Festival Youth Art Exhibition 2020 will showcase youthful talent and imagination through K-12 student artwork. Elementary, middle and high school art teachers submit work on behalf of their students for the show. The entries represent numerous different area public and private schools. The dedication and professionalism of our area art teachers is evident in the quality of the student artwork on display and the exhibition is always stunning. While this show is traditionally on display at the City Hall Gallery, the pandemic has forced the gallery to close temporarily, so these works will be viewed in COCA’s Online Gallery. More info here
The Art in Bugs/Bugs in the Arts Exhibit
(Nov. 5 – Dec.18 at the Colquitt County Arts Center)
Through beautiful photographs by respected nature photographers from near and far, as well as illustrated texts and materials, this exhibit will help you discover the many fascinating ways bugs contribute to the arts.
Learn more by clicking here.
Sciturdays - Crafty Upcycling (Nov. 14)
Crafty Upcycling: Learn how to upcycle with items found in your own home. Make crafts from recyclable materials, all while learning how recycling helps our planet and all the creatures that inhabit it. Upcycle used materials to create a glowing plastic bottle bug, cork critters and paper tube koi fish. Science happens every Saturday at the CLC! SCIturdays at the Challenger Learning Center are designed for you and your child to learn new skills while having fun together! On the second and fourth Saturday of the month, join us for a hands-on, family-friendly workshop featuring a STEAM topic: science, technology, engineering, art and/or mathematics. Discover new interests and engage in a fun-filled morning! Click here for more.
Youth Wildlife Art Workshop at Thomasville Center for the Arts (Nov. 14)
Young artists, age 5-12, are invited to create a mini-masterpiece under the direction of a guest instructor while learning snippets about our local wildlife and ecosystems. Young visitors will also find wild and wonderful ways to engage with our furry and feathered animal friends at our new TCA Kids PLAYce open 10a – 5p. The workshop is free, but spaces are limited. Click here for more details.
Autumn Art Adventures: Youth Garden Workshop (Nov. 25)
In this first of its kind youth workshop, we will take art-making out of the studio and into nature in our on-site sculpture garden. Students will work outside, making artwork inspired by nature, the changing seasons, and autumnal holidays. Students will learn about the elements of art, how to work with their art materials, and get creative with the assistance of a LeMoyne Arts instructor. Click here for more info.
Musicians' Recorded Feature Series
Performing artists are provided an opportunity to continue working during closures: perform a 25-45 minute set of original music, to be professionally recorded. Only required staff members and band members are present in the building, which includes our: videographer, lighting technician, sound engineer, and marketing director. Bands are interviewed prior to performing, and they receive professionally edited videos and image stills for their own marketing efforts. Tallahassee Live Music Community then markets the feature online, and accepts donations for a two-week period. Donations are split 50-50 to the band and to TLMC to re-invest in marketing performers. The entire feature is provided free of charge to the performers. Click here for more.
Call for Arts Mentors at Raa Middle School 
In partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Big Bend and Raa Middle School, COCA seeks local visual artists, musicians, dancers, and theater professionals to provide mentoring to middle school arts students in Raa's Magnet Program. These students know they want a life filled with arts experiences and you can show them how. If the arts have been an important part of your life and you want to pass that on, this is the perfect opportunity for you. The commitment is very low, just one hour per week, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Big Bend takes care of all the rest at no cost to you. Support these students by helping them develop communication and social skills, positive relationships with adults, as well as a life-long love of the arts. If you are interested or want more details, here or contact Raa's Magnet Coordinator, William Sahely at sahelyw@leonschools.netVisit to sign up to be a mentor.
Did You Know?
A president recovering from a term or two in the highest seat of executive power in the United States is a prime candidate for some downtime. It makes sense that they’d want to relax and unwind for a bit, maybe pick up a calming hobby or two. For four presidents in history that we know of, and likely a few more that we don’t, painting has been a comfort both before their executive years and after them.
As president, Ulysses S. Grant took pride in his ability not only to command armies, but to create art as well. Although Dwight Eisenhower’s artistic streak didn’t begin until his later years, over the course of his life, he produced at least 250 known paintings. Jimmy Carter’s paintings seem to specialize in scenic and naturalistic imagery, and the former peanut farmer also dabbles in woodwork. George W. Bush (pictured above) has produced a considerable portfolio of amateur animal paintings as well as still lifes, landscapes, and other subject matter.
Learn more about these Presidential painters. Click here to read a Mental Floss article by By Roma Panganiban.
About the Arts in Education Newsletter
Amanda Karioth Thompson
Assistant Director
Education & Exhibitions Manager
Council on Culture & Arts
To submit listings for COCA's Arts in Education Monthly Newsletter, send a description of 50 words or less to Amanda Karioth Thompson at COCA reserves the right to include or exclude any listing at its discretion and to determine the content and placement of all listings. Deadline for submission is 5:00pm on the fourth Monday of the month.
COCA does not endorse any artists, organizations, or programs listed herein, nor imply stature through their inclusion in this newsletter. While we have made every effort to ensure that this information is correct, we cannot guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or timeliness of the information.