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November 2015

Sarasota Ballet Wows Area 3rd Graders

A big thank you to our partners at Sarasota Ballet, who welcomed nearly 2,000 area third graders on October 20-22 for special performances of their 25th Anniversary showcase, The Best of Theatre of Dreams! The students not only got a sneak peek at the Ballet's season opening production before it opened to the general public, but they also enjoyed special lesson plans prepared for their teachers by ballet staff and members of the Sarasota School District.

The lessons covered everything from choreography and movement to set design and stage direction, providing the students both an enriched learning experience and a unique look "behind the scenes" at how the Ballet and its dancers prepare for each performance. Students and teachers also received discount coupons so they and their families can attend this season's production of The Nutcracker on December 18-19.

Thank you once again to Sarasota Ballet for making this wonderful opportunity available to area students!


Residency Program in Full Swing

The Any Given Child Residency Program, made possible through our Project Elevate Grant, is now in full swing at Atwater, Brentwood, Emma E. Booker and Tuttle elementary schools. Arts Integration Specialist Jessica DiLorenzo has been visiting each of the schools one day per week since early October and working with 2nd and 3rd grade students and their teachers.

Jessica is helping the teachers develop and use the arts to deepen their students' understanding about science, language arts and math. By incorporating elements like dance, movement, drama and creative writing into their learning experience, the students are gaining greater knowledge about animal habitats, climates and the importance of environmental conservation and preservation both in our state and elsewhere. A culminating event is planned at each school in mid-December, where the students will highlight arts integration in action by demonstrating what they have learned throughout the fall. 


Teachers: Join us December 2-3 for a Special Workshop with Stuart Stotts

Season 2 of our Arts Integration League (AIL) series of professional development workshops got off to a great start this month with a visit by Kennedy Center Teaching Artist Marcia Daft. Next month's workshop promises to be just as good, as Any Given Child and The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall welcome noted songwriter, storyteller and author Stuart Stotts.

Stotts is a Kennedy Center teaching artist and a frequent presenter at educational events, keynoting conferences and leading workshops for elementary, middle and high school teachers around the country. During this practical, hands-on workshop, he will lead teachers in the development of a variety of storytelling strategies they can use to get students actively involved in improving their writing skills using oral communications. 

Email Any Given Child Program Manager Maria Schaedler-Luera for additional information or to learn more about the Arts Integration League.

Change Young Lives through the Arts

Every day throughout Sarasota County, Any Given Child Sarasota is helping realize the dream established by members of our local community five years ago to develop and build high-quality arts education programs and instruction in our local schools.

Won't you join us? Give today by visiting our online donation page on the Community Foundation of Sarasota County website and selecting the "Any Given Child Fund." Or contact Program Director Brian Hersh at to explore giving opportunities that match your personal interests and goals.

Together, we can bring the arts to life for ALL students in Sarasota County Schools.

Thank you!
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