A Renaissance on the Eastside: Motivating Inner-City Youth Through Art
Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education
Research tells us that children are more susceptible to temptations between the hours of 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.—the hours following the end of the school day when parents are not yet home from work. This study looks at the "life histories" of child participants in the Artists in the Making (AIM) program—a program that aims to motivate inner-city youth through the use of visual arts classes. Despite the diversity of the children who participated in the AIM program, several common themes emerged from the interview process: self-discovery, problem-solving skills, opportunities for positive risk taking, and the mastery of artistic skills. This article proposes that community-based visual arts programs can help children develop protective factors that will allow them to be resilient. When I draw, I feel like I am in another world. When I go home after class, I feel like I am walking back into hell. ("Rashie," a student in the Artists in the Making program, 1998).