The Architecture Resource Center (ARC) was founded in 1991 as the education component of the nonprofit Connecticut Architecture Foundation. Due to the overwhelming success of ARC programming and its vision for expansion of services the ARC was incorporated as a separate nonprofit in March 2005.
The mission of the Architecture Resource Center is to improve critical, creative, and problem-solving skills in K-12 students by teaching them how to apply principles of architecture, urban design, engineering, industrial design and graphic design to their own world. ARC programs provide students and educators with a heightened appreciation of architecture and design and empower them with arts-based STEM learning and 21st-century skills they can apply in every aspect of learning and life.
Teachers learn about the power of the arts to transform education and become comfortable working with the arts and arts language. The interdisciplinary team teaching approach including math, science, social studies, and language arts help students to see the meaning and connection among those disciplines. Students learn how to express themselves in two and three-dimensional language, how to communicate their ideas, and how to work in teams to solve problems and make new discoveries. And through this process, they also learn about themselves, their relationship to each other, their families, their community and their environment.
From community projects to classroom curriculum and comprehensive textbooks to statewide initiatives, ARC develops and implements visionary projects and programs that integrate the built environment and design problem solving as a natural component of learning. This is made possible through community collaborations with diverse teams of educators, scholars, architects, planners, designers, and leaders of cultural organizations, business, and government agencies. ARC’s program has been cited as a prototype for education/business partnerships and has received local, state, and national awards year after year for education and creativity.
ARC programs are organized into three categories–K-12 School Programs; Community and Festival Programs; and, Outreach.
ARC master teaching artists and designers implement artist residencies in K-12 schools and professional development for educators. Personnel develop and create design curricula and design publications. Community and Festival Programs provide opportunities to collaborate with cultural organizations and social service agencies and participate in festival events. Outreach addresses our state, national, and international efforts to make a lasting impact on the fields of Design and Education through participation in conferences and dissemination of learning materials.
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