Art to the Core

“This world is but a canvas to our imagination.” – Henry David Thoreau

At Challenge Charter School the Arts are highly prioritized and integrated through each subject to help our students express the beauty they see in the world in many formats and mediums.

Leclairs class (12)

Highlights of the art program:


  • Building a strong foundation in understanding and creating art by learning the elements of art and the principles of design.
  • Gaining knowledge of traditional art genres- landscape, portrait and still life, as well as experimenting with abstract and expressionistic art.
  • Creating a connection between Core Knowledge Curriculum (esp. social studies) and art lessons for every grade. For example, first grade is making a drawing of a pharaoh with a hieroglyphic boarder while studying Egypt.
  • Incorporating art history and art appreciation in most of the lessons by learning about specific artists, artworks and art movements from prehistoric to modern and contemporary.
  • Even though students get inspiration from famous masterpieces they never mechanically copy artworks-originality is always encouraged and required!
  • Students are given the opportunity to use a variety of art techniques and mediums like drawing, painting, collage, sculpture and paper
    mache. In every class students learn new art terms to help build their vocabulary.

The students LOVE Mr. and Mrs. Miller’s art gallery! The Millers founded the CCS Art program with a commitment to a culture where artists are free to create with no fear and there is no “right way” to express yourself as a developing artist. To prove that art is truly in the eye of the beholder, they chose their own favorite selections each year and offer to buy these pieces making some of our students proud, paid artists! These pieces are shown off at the end of year assemblies and hung in the cafeteria gallery. Previous years’ masterpieces are spread about the campus bringing this beauty to all who enter.

CCS is a unique, supportive, and safe learning community where kids come first in all decision making, accountability is embedded in all processes, and academic rigor and citizenship are pillar expectations & motivators for all: staff and students.

April 2021

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