HISD summer fine arts camp inspires future artists

Avani, a rising fifth-grader from MacGregor Elementary School, has dreams of becoming an abstract visual artist, and after two weeks at HISD’s Fine Arts Summer Camp at Tanglewood Middle School, that dream may soon become a reality.  

“One day, I have dreams of making abstract art and putting it all over my walls – just splattering paint all over my walls,” she said. “I think camp will help me do that.” 

The four-week camp, which is offered to students in grades 3-12, is a superb exhibition of creativity by HISD students who are immersed in the district’s first ever summer fine arts camp. The idea was inspired by Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan’s mission to provide fine arts access to more students throughout the district, according to HISD Theatre Curriculum Specialist Jared Berry. 

“Fine arts camps like these give students a solid fine arts foundation,” Berry said. “It is also a great way for campuses to showcase the fine arts programs that they offer.” 

The camps are hosted at five schools across the district and are provided at no cost. The program is designed to offer fine arts curriculum-based learning to help grow student artists, as well as to enhance their cultural sensitivity and awareness. 

During the camp, students are involved in an array of age-appropriate art experiences in dance, music, theatre, and visual arts. Each week, elementary aged students explore a different fine art area. Middle school aged campers participate in one art area for all four weeks, and campers at the high school level participate in visual arts with a focus on photography and digital platforms.  

“This is an awesome opportunity for students get a free fine arts experience,” said Danielle Jones, dance teacher at Scroggins Elementary School. “So far the students have really enjoyed themselves and this is something the students can take back to their campus and share with their classmates there.”