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COCA's Monthly Arts in Education Newsletter for March 2021


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
COCA Arts in Education Articles
‘Power in the art’: Gadsden teens make important connections on Arts Council
February 17, 2021
As a rite of passage, many teenagers get part time jobs to earn extra spending money and learn responsibility. While scooping ice cream, mowing lawns, or bagging groceries may not influence their ultimate choice of occupation, some teens get the opportunity to explore careers they’ve always dreamed of.
It’s especially rewarding when young employees are able to contribute to the program development of a highly respected leader in the Florida art community like the accredited Gadsden Arts Center and Museum. 
The organization’s Teen Art Council is comprised of eager young people who have expressed an interest in learning more about the arts. The council came about through funding from Art Bridges, a group that supports innovative audience building projects designed to increase community access to American art.
Read the rest of the story here. Check out our archived articles on the COCA blog.
Black Violin breaks down color barriers in virtual show for fourth graders
February 10, 2021
With influences ranging from Shostakovich and Bach to Nas and Jay-Z, stereotype-smashing Black Violin breaks the rules, blending classical, hip-hop, rock, R&B, and bluegrass to create a sound they call “classical boom.”
Black Violin is an American hip hop duo from Fort Lauderdale, composed of classically trained violist and violinist Wil B. and Kev Marcus who combine their classical training and hip-hop influences to create a distinctive multi-genre sound. 
They’ve shared stages with top names including Kayne West and Aerosmith and have collaborated with Wyclef Jean and Alicia Keys, among others.
Recently they performed virtually for students at Oak Ridge Elementary School as part of Opening Nights at Florida State University’s ON in Class educational offerings, sponsored by Centennial Bank.
Read the rest of the story here. Check out our archived articles on the COCA blog.
Action Alert
The Florida legislature is back in session and there are several items you may want to advocate for regarding arts education.
If you're so moved, please write to your delegates during the week of MARCH 16-19 and ask them to vote in favor of:
1. ACE Grant (Arts for a Complete Education) SB LFIR 1032 (Gruters) HB 3285 (McFarland)
2. Seal of Fine Arts SB 1740 (Rouson) HB 1375 (Diamond)
3. Arts and Second Language SB (Bracy) HB 2051 (Morales)
You may also express your support of these bills that have an effect on our community arts organizations and programs:
1. Nonprofit Property Tax Exemptions SB 1214 (Gruters) HB 889 (Borrero)
2. Grants for arts/culture through Division of Cultural Affairs, at full funding
When advocating for public schools, if you are employed in the system, you are advised to use your home email or address in any correspondence with your delegates.
Find your delegates here: 
Teaching Resources
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.
Toronto-based developer Jacob Jackson launched a simple visual search engine that’s particularly adept at gathering results with similar patterns, compositions, and textures. Aptly named Same Energy, the tool is still in beta and minimal by design, with a focus on the image rather than keywords. Results are grouped together by category, which generates a more comprehensive set of findings than similar searches. Learn more here by clicking here.
FMEA - Music Education Scholarship (Postmark deadline: April 20)
FMEA is soliciting scholarship applications for the 2021 June M. Hinckley Music Education Scholarship. The Association will award $1000 scholarships to selected 2020-2021 graduating high school students who participated in a Florida All-State ensemble and who intend to major in music education at a Florida college or university. Please see the application here.
The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Jane H. Kesson School Concert Program
The Philadelphia Orchestra is offering a Virtual School Concert experience with unique distance learning materials. This virtual experience will be in place of our in-person school concerts that usually take place in the spring, to ensure students (grades 3–5) and teachers can experience the orchestra from the safety of their homes and/or classrooms during these uncertain times. Click here to take advantage of this educational opportunity.
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. 
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
Job Opportunities
Painting With a Twist Artist Employment Opportunity
Fun BYOB innovative painting instruction business in Tallahassee looking for energetic, fun artists with teaching experience to work in a creative and exciting environment! Must be able to guide classes of up to 48 people to paint an acrylic painting in two to three hours. Other duties include setting up for class, clean-up, checking in customers and reconciling payment and attendance. Primarily evening and weekend classes. Click here for more details.
MLE Guitar Instructor Position
Music Lessons Express, Tallahassee’s largest music school, is looking to hire a guitar instructor to teach in-home lessons and lessons at our studio on Apalachee Parkway. Candidates should have at least one year of teaching experience and be comfortable teaching all ages and ability levels. Instructors must have reliable transportation and excellent communication skills. All instructors must pass a background check. Preference will be given to candidates familiar with the Suzuki method and/or who can teach multiple genres. Click here to learn more.
Call for Visual Art Instructors
We work with our instructors to offer varied and engaging programs, as unique and artistic as our instructors themselves.
LeMoyne offers four 8-week studio sessions for adults, teens and children: Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall, as well as a myriad of one or two day workshops year round. Some of our instructors teach multiple classes, some teach one at a time, and others teach during one season of the year. All instructors are paid independent contractors, and receive a free one-year Individual Membership to LeMoyne Arts. Click here to learn more.
With Appreciation
COCA Education Grant
Around Town
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
Florida Animation Festival
(Deadline: March 3)
Submissions are open for the sixth annual Florida Animation Festival (FAF). Two free categories are available for young animators, Debut for animators between 13-17 years old, and Debut Junior for under 12. Click here for more details.
Call for Art: Artists and Autism, How I See the World Virtual Art Exhibition (Deadline: March 15)
Florida State University Autism Institute and Center for Autism and Related Disabilities(FSU CARD) partners with the LeRoy Collins Leon County Public Library and Arts4All Florida to present “Artists and Autism: How I See the World,” a virtual exhibition featuring works of art by people with autism and related disabilities. Individuals of all ages with autism and related disabilities throughout the Big Bend Region and the Panhandle of Florida are invited to submit art for this exhibition that will be displayed on the Leon County Public Library website. Click here for more details. 
34th Annual Mahaska Whitley Student Exhibition, High School ​Art & Senior Portfolio Competition (March 11-31)
Every year LeMoyne Arts hosts this annual exhibit in which the creativity and talents of our local high school students is on full display. Student artwork is awarded gift certificates for art supplies and college scholarships following judging from a panel of esteemed locals in the arts community. Join us in supporting these young artists. More details here
Casting Call for Music Video (Deadline: April 4)
Cat Family Records is looking for actors and locations for a music video. The video follows the evolution of a mother-daughter relationship, from youth to adulthood, through the connection they share with an uncommon sweater. Find more info here
Turning the Page: Inclusive Illustrations by Elizabeth Lampman Davis through April 5
In this solo exhibition of her digital illustrations, Lampman Davis strives to increase the visibility of children who are underrepresented children’s literature. This exhibition is not just “family friendly,” kids are heartily encouraged to tour the show which can be viewed at the Artport Gallery or in COCA’s Online Gallery at More info here
Opening Nights Presents: Black Violin’s Virtual Student Project
Black Violin enters the student virtual space with an all-new, high-energy, performance that takes their unique blend of classical music, hip-hop, jazz, and pop to new heights. Recorded at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, this engaging, high-definition multi-camera video covers themes of perseverance, exploration, and unity with songs like Rise, Unbreakable, Believer, Dreamer and Impossible is Possible. Embedded in the performance is a message for students and educators about challenging stereotypes and status quo conventions, and that pathways to success require commitment, practice, and unwavering dedication.
Please contact Calla MacNamara at Opening Nights at FSU to receive access to this opportunity at
Thank you Centennial Bank for supporting arts education!
Viral Voices: Sharing Your Pandemic Experience
The Viral Voices: Sharing Your Pandemic Story project empowers Leon County citizens in grades K-12 to share their personal narratives about life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Make your voice heard; we’re looking for your stories, poems, letters, photographs, artwork, spoken word, music and short videos. Share your experience, whether it is inspirational, funny, sad or frustrated. Your stories are part of our County’s history. Click here to learn how to participate.
The "A Town Divided" Education Program
Intended for use by high school teachers, the A Town Divided Education Program features a downloadable package that includes access to the FULL video production of A Town Divided, Southern Shakespeare Company’s original adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet – set in Tallahassee, Florida.
The A Town Divided Education Program also offers an accompanying educational video and a classroom resource series which takes a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of A Town Divided and discusses the issues it raises while exploring Romeo and Juliet. Click here for more details.
Art Therapy Services
Mosaic Creative Counseling is accepting new clients for art therapy services! Mosaic is committed to helping clients put the pieces of their lives back together again through art therapy and counseling. We offer a creative and safe space for individuals, families, and partners to discover themselves and move forward in their lives. Mosaic is dedicated to offering trauma-informed and culturally inclusive services to address a variety of client concerns. In addition to art therapy and counseling, we also offer education and training to the community. Click here for more info. 
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 Visit to sign up to be a mentor.
VIRTUAL Chalk Walk 20201
The annual Chalk Walk event is produced by COCA and our partners the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs​ and Leon County Schools to showcase arts education advocacy in conjunction with Arts Week at the Florida State Capitol.
This year, we took the event virtual and are featuring 36 high school students recreating original works by Florida artists in chalk. These students were led by seven art teachers representing Chiles, Lincoln, Maclay, and SAIL high schools. 
Check out COCA's social media pages on March 9 to see the work created by these talented young artists. FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.
Did You Know?
March is nationally recognized as Music in Our Schools Month, Theatre in Our Schools Month, Dance in Our Schools Month and Youth Art Month. The arts not only offer students an opportunity for self-expression and personal growth, but interdisciplinary activities involving the arts can also improve comprehension and challenge students to approach learning in new ways.
The arts are an integral, multifaceted part of life and have the power to inspire and transform. Thank you to all the teachers, administrators and arts education stakeholders who continue to provide excellence and equity in arts education throughout the state of Florida.
See the Action Alert above to learn how you can help support arts education in the state of Florida.
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.