At The Foundations School, we seek out new ways to engage our students in the creative process. Recently, we started an afterschool program where a limited number of our older students are learning about the digital arts through Photoshop.

“We’re giving them new tools to create,” said Erick Marquez, CCE’s Technology Integration Specialist, who is leading the class. “I want them to understand that the digital tools aren’t that different from the tools that we use when we create physical art. They just exist in a different space.”

After a few weeks, students are still getting comfortable in this new space and starting each session with a blank canvas to experiment with. But eventually, the goal is to have students take on long-term creative projects.

“I want them to understand narrative by creating pieces—whether they’re movie posters or flyers that advertise a business—I want them to create pieces that tell a story,” Marquez said. “And it’s very important to me that they can use this creative space for psychological growth.”

As with other arts-integrated projects, Marquez’s class on the digital arts teaches students social-emotional skills. Students are demonstrating curiosity and open-mindedness as they learn something new, learning to manage their emotions as they move through the creative process, and developing positive relationships with their classmates as they help each other and learn together. And by developing a narrative, they are able to better understand themselves and the world around them.

This latest digital arts program is part of The Foundations School’s move to integrate technology into our arts-based curriculum. To learn more about our exciting developments in this area, click here