Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Yo-yo Ma brings "Arts strike" to Telpochcalli

Telpochcalli is a small neighborhood public school on Chicago's southwest side. It was started by teachers as part of the early small schools movement. The school's mission focuses on arts integration and bi-lingual literacy. In this morning's Trib, Mark Caro writes:
What Yo-Yo Ma and friends brought to [Telpochcalli] Monday was dubbed an "arts strike," which is fitting because that particular iron is hot. Ma, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's creative consultant, and Damian Woetzel, a ballet star/director/producer who serves with the virtuoso cellist on President Barack Obama's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, gathered a diverse collection of performing artists at the Telpochcalli Elementary School in the predominantly Mexican-American Little Village neighborhood to illustrate the benefits of arts-based education programs. Don't miss the great video. 
According to Caro, after the program Ma was enthusiastic about Telpochcalli.
"The school is spreading a fabulous message," he said, noting that teaching two languages helps students see the world from multiple perspectives. "Plus you add the senses, whether it's music, it's dance, collaboration — all these things are the ingredients that stimulate the imagination. Imagination and empathy are the key ingredients to creating an innovative workforce, a student population that is absolutely curious and passionate about learning, and this school is doing it the right way."
"This is the type of thing that could really make a difference in people's lives," he said, "not just enriching but giving the fundamental values of what builds a great society."


  1. This school is proof of the necessity of the arts to a balanced education. Brizard was swooning over Yo-Yo Ma. Let's hope he stopped swooning long enough to hear what Ma was saying.

    How about taking some action to get the arts back into ALL of our schools on a daily basis to feed the brains, souls and imaginations of our students.
    m brandt

  2. Anon,

    There is nothing preventing other schools from doing exactly what Telpochcalli does. They don't need Brizard to do it.


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