Connected Arts Learning: Connecting Interests, Opportunities, and Relationships, in Out-of-School Arts

The Connected Arts Learning project presents a framework for 21st century arts learning with a focus on connecting youths’ interest-driven art making to opportunities through supportive relationships. Drawing from a review of arts education and connected learning literature, interviews with key advisors, and case studies of nonprofit arts learning organizations, this project offers recommendations for the design and evaluation of connected arts learning. Connected arts learning pushes the arts education field to consider a broader range of outcomes of the arts, including those civic and career related, promote interest development, emphasize networks and connections through art making, draw from culturally sustaining practices to make connections between spaces for learning, and center the holistic affordances of the arts.


Connected Arts Learning Framework

For some time now, the arts education community has designed for broader outcomes for youth. These programs intentionally foster not only youth achievements within the arts or academics, but also youth and community thriving—through outcomes such as youth civic engagement, occupational identities, and wellness.