MISSOULA — We stepped outside the classroom for an Arts Enhancement Day in downtown Missoula for this Arts and Education report.
During the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival all of the sixth-grade students in Missoula County Public Schools were invited to the Wilma Theater for a SPARK! Arts Missoula enhancement day.
Now this time it was only the six grade students, however, every grade in the Missoula County Public School system will have the chance to experience one of these enhancement days throughout the year.
“So, the goal for these arts enhancements is to expose these kids to the arts where they might not otherwise have the opportunity. Also, our goal is to expose them to different art forms," SPARK! Arts Missoula director Sienna Solberg said.
The main focus when we stopped by was film and the film making process. It's a skill that Wilma Theater education coordinator Julia Sherman hopes lights a spark and fuels interest for film in these kids.
“With these programs, we want to install an appreciation for film and the arts," Julia Sherman said. "And also, a better understanding of what goes into making this, as far as a creative process goes. Once you see what goes into the craft of it you appreciate it more, and you look at it differently when you engage with it.”
Solberg has seen first-hand how these enhancement classes can give kids a real appreciation for the arts. The classes also give these students resources so they can search out different art forms and experiences for themselves.
“So, we’ve heard kids just so inspired by these activities and experiences. And that’s what we're really trying to do, show them what the Missoula community has to offer. So they can then explore it on their own or develop a passion for it," Solberg concluded.