Art is Awesome! Art Docent Program

 

Volunteer to be an Art Docent

Do you love art and art history? Would you like to pass that love on to kids at Enatai? Then we have the perfect volunteer role for you. You don't need to be artistic, or have any teaching experience to be an Art Docent. All it takes is an hour or two a month - you choose the subjects you want to present from our library of quick and easy presentations, and we provide the art materials. The kids pretty much take it from there!

Please email enataiartdocent@gmail.com for more information, or sign up to volunteer for your kid's class or grade level. If you haven’t already done so, please fill out a Volunteer Application and submit it to the office. 

 

History of Enatai's Art Docent Program

Enatai’s Art is Awesome! Art Docent Program teaches our students about artists, art styles, and art history through interactive lessons that help them develop a critical eye for art while building artistic self-confidence.

Our program began in 2011 after a school-wide PTSA poll overwhelmingly showed a need for more art education support at Enatai. This inspired Enatai parent Gina McSweeney, who teamed up with the PTSA Board to pilot the program. During the pilot period, Ms. McSweeney and a small, dedicated team of parent volunteers visited each classroom to present art docent lessons.

Not only did the students love getting additional time to create art, they also enjoyed learning about artists and art styles that they may not have learned about in other art classes. Fellow art enthusiast parents and teachers soon rallied to keep the program going and more Art Docent volunteers were recruited and trained. The following year, each and every classroom had an Art Docent volunteer.

Thanks to the dedication and support of our Art Docent volunteers, teachers, and PTSA members, the Art Docent Program continues to grow.

How It Works

An art docent is a volunteer who acts as a guide in art museums. Enatai’s Art Docents act as art guides in their children’s classrooms, volunteering each month to present a lesson about an artist or art style and complete a related project. At the end of the year, students typically put together a portfolio of their art work that could include clay mosaics and free-hanging sculptures along with paintings and drawings.

As an Art Docent, you would commit to about three hours of volunteer work once a month. You would be responsible for presenting a lesson and project on a date that is agreed upon with the teacher. The three-hour commitment breaks down like this: one hour of prep at home (picking an artist and project, preparing/reviewing the PowerPoint lesson on the artist/art style, practicing talking in front of the class), 30 minutes of prep at school (gathering materials and supplies, covering desks and floors with drop cloths if needed, distributing materials and supplies to each desk), one hour in the class (~15 minute lesson, ~45 minute project), and 30 minutes clean up.

Our Art Docent Program has a growing library of PowerPoint presentations on artists and art styles created by our dedicated volunteers. Past artists include Alexander Calder, Georgia O’Keeffe, Henri Matisse, Frida Kahlo, Paul Cezanne, and Bridget Riley. Art styles such as Native American art and animation have been explored, along with abstract and realist art.

Resources

For Art Docents:

Art Docent Basics
PowerPoint Presentations
Presentation Notes
Recommended Projects/Lessons by Grade Level
Talking about Art with Children
Reimbursement Form

For Parents and Students:

Free Museum Days in the Bellevue & Seattle Area
Awesome Art Books