Spectra Classroom

SPECTRA “Classroom” webpage description:



Created Resources offers in-school art activities and field trips (either one time or multiple times per semester/year) to engage students from PreK-5th grades in the visual arts and develop their artistic knowledge, skills, and creativity. Owner April Coleman has 20 years of experience as an educator, with a background in gifted and art education, and instruction is focused on the elements of art, famous artists/styles, and basic drawing/painting techniques taught in a fun, engaging, developmentally appropriate way. In-school art activities or field trips are hosted at your school-based location (classroom, library, multipurpose area) and include a custom art project based on a theme of your choice (see below), one hour of guided instruction to create a painting or mixed media project on quality art paper or canvas, and all art materials. Instruction will be provided to each individual class in different time slots unless an alternate arrangement is made to combine classes. Rates begin at $7/student and vary based on project type and number of participants. Themes include the following:

·      Meet a Master – Introduction to a famous artist and art project in their style

·      Brushes & Books – Integrates an art project with children’s literature

·      Art & Emotions – Integrates an art project with a SEL concept

·      Seasonal – Choose from our library of custom seasonal art projects

·      Holiday – Create a unique gift from students to parents for Christmas, Mother’s Day, or another special occasion.

·      Custom Theme – Let us work with you to plan something special related to a current academic topic, school-wide theme, special event, or anything else!

ART HISTORY with KAREN BRUMMUND (Installation Artist)


30-60 minute hands-on art history that inspire us to be curious, resilient, and inclusive. 

We can’t always take a field trip to an art museum, but we can bring some of those inspiring and diverse voices to the classroom through story and projects. By reading the most amazing picture books, we will learn about the history of sculpture, painting, photography, and other forms of modern art. We will also use the arts to think critically and develop empathy for others. Great artists are memorialized in big museums, but they are also regular people with lives full of challenges and triumphs. They make art that expresses their stories and inspires us to imagine positive paths forward in our own journeys. After reading and discussing, we will apply our ideas about the artist to a hands-on art project like designing a dizzying dot picture like Yayoi Kusama (a female, Japanese painter). Fourth graders who are studying Alabama State History will make paper quilt squares like the artists in Gee’s Bend, Alabama. 

Spectra Highlights:

1) Gee’s Bend
A collective of Alabama artists who share a story about the Civil Rights Movement in Alabama and make quilts that can be found in both the Smithsonian and (as of 2024) Target. *Fourth Grade Alabama State History

2) Yayoi Kusama
A female, Japanese artist who struggled to feel accepted in the world, makes paintings and installations about infinity. *Dot Day

3) John Cage
An innovative composer and conceptual artist that believed all sound was beautiful even the sounds others ignore. 

FEE: $100 per session/class, and $30 for materials


Everyone has stories to share! Learn basic tips about fiction writing from a published adult and children’s author. Plot development, dialogue, characterization, point of view–these are several of the building blocks needed to create a successful story.

GRADES: 3-12 FEE: No fee


Students will explore the art of dance by taking your choice of either a jazz or musical theater style class. Class will consist of movement stretches and learning a fun combination taught by Alden Phillips McShan, a native of Tuscaloosa and current artistic director for Tuscaloosa Community Dancers. 45-60 minutes, designed for groups up to 30.

GRADES: K-12 FEE: $75-$100


Features techniques and weapons used by stuntmen to create fight scenes. Discussions include safety and the real effects of violence. GRADES: K-6 FEE: $150


An interactive rhythm program with award-winning master teaching artist John Scalici. This program puts a drum in the hands of every student as they learn about respect, communication, and teamwork through rhythm. Some activities incorporate elements of math, science, and language arts. GRADES: 3-8 FEE: $750 for Full Day Program. Half-day and single grade level/after school programs available as well.


Get ready for an exciting pottery class! The instructor will captivate students by demonstrating how to throw a large vase on the pottery wheel. After the demonstration, it’s time for hands-on creativity. Each student will receive a piece of clay to craft their favorite objects, which will be used as ornamentation for the vase in a fun group project.

Throughout this interactive exercise, students will delve into the fascinating world of clay and pottery making, learning about the intricate processes involved in creating clay artworks. The vase will be returned to the school once fired and glazed by the instructor. GRADE: K-12; FEE: $125 for 90-minute session. All materials included. 


Inspired by Eric Carle, students will learn how to look at animals and draw them by using simple geometric shapes. This lesson starts with reading one of Eric Carle’s books and taking a closer look at his collage artwork. Students will learn about color and compositional principles of design. Interdisciplinary Science potential by focusing on real animals and animal habitats, but can also focus on developing imaginary animals/creatures. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 3 hours, can be broken up in 2-3 lessons (flexible schedule). GRADE: Modified to fit any age FEE: $350 plus $2 per student for art materials


Students will learn about the artist Henri Matisse and his methods and then make their own musically-inspired collages. This lesson connects music notes with visual elements and breaks down simple vocabulary terms that connect the two art forms. Optional: Kinesthetic movement included for younger aged groups. Interdisciplinary Unit. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 2-3 hours, can be broken up in 2 lessons (flexible schedule). GRADE: Modified to fit any age FEE: $350 plus $2 per student for art materials.


In this highly interactive experience, students work collaboratively to paint an oversized color wheel. Starting with only the primary colors, students will learn how to make a variety of colors, how colors interact with each other, and how colors can express and evoke different human emotions. This color lesson can include a book reading to illustrate concepts (various books available according to age group). Lots of potential for Social Emotional Learning connections. By the end of this lesson, students will have made their own collaborative large-scale color wheel by piecing together smaller pieces of paper, which can be used to create other art projects in the future. This lesson can be combined with “Animals, Animals, Animals” and “Musical Collages” listed above for a truly unique experience and student artworks. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor 1.5 hours GRADE: Modified to fit any age FEE: $200 plus $2 per student for art materials


After looking at a variety of artworks from professional artists that work with only paper, students will create their own paper sculptures. Learning the difference between shape and form, students explore three-dimensional building with easy-to-learn tips and tricks. Basic techniques are taught before challenges are presented, offering students the opportunity to problem solve within a limited set of rules. Lots of fun and tons of room for creativity with limited mess! No glue or tape – just paper. We will fringe, score, pleat, fold, bend, tear, curl, cut, fold-reverse, and much more. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. Two 45-minute sessions. GRADE: 3-12 FEE: $350 plus $1 per student for art materials


After learning about the Renaissance man, Leonardo DaVinci, students will draw, design inventions, solve problems, and document their explorations in a simple format sketchbook. DaVinci’s wide range of work as a scientist, inventor and artist, serves as a great role model for today’s students. This unit introduces students to connections between various academic subjects and how drawing can inform many fields. Interdisciplinary potential: This unit can be adapted to reinforce specific lessons already being covered in current curriculum, upon teacher request. No additional fee for adaptations. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 2-3 hours, can be broken up in 2 lessons (flexible schedule) GRADE: Modified to fit any age FEE: $350 plus $1 per student for art materials


Bring the Art Museum to your students with this thought provoking quick (and no mess) lesson. Surrounded by a variety of large image reproductions of famous art works, students explore important questions and discuss topics. With no previous knowledge needed, students learn to evaluate art using a variety of specific criteria, practice how to differentiate between preference and judgment, and practice respecting different opinions. Students do not produce an art “product” but instead focus on critical thinking skills. Optional: Higher grade levels can expand lesson with a reflective writing assignment. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 1 hour minimum, can be two lessons to provide more time for exploration & discussion. GRADE: 4-12 FEE: $150 per lesson/hour (no art supply fee)


Students learn about four famous artists and how to differentiate their distinct styles. This introduction to subject matter, painting techniques and styles help develop art vocabulary and encourage a wide range of ways to classify art. Interactive lesson with group discussions. Access to digital equipment for slideshow presentation is required. Coloring page of famous artworks at end of lesson to help students connect with the artists’ work. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 1 hour GRADE: 4-12 FEE: $150 (no art supply fee)


Help your classroom celebrate a variety of heritage months by taking a closer look at some of their famous artists. Optional: Coloring page of famous artworks at end of lesson to help students remember and connect with artists’ works. Access to digital equipment for slideshow presentation is required. 4 presentations in the school year available. Sept 15 – Oct 15: Hispanic Heritage Month; February: African American/Black History Month; March: Women’s History Month ;May: Asian Pacific Heritage Month. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 1 hour GRADE: 4-12 FEE: $150 per presentation or $600 for all 4 presentations (no art supply fee)


Students learn about different themes in art beyond the traditional landscape and portrait categories. Options: Story Telling, Math in Art, Famous Self-Portraits, Public Art, Famous Installation Artists, and Poverty in Art. Access to digital equipment for slideshow presentation is required. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor. 1 hour GRADE: 4-12 FEE: $150 (no art supply fee)


Bring alive the art of taking notes to your classroom. Visiting Artist will demonstrate and teach this method to facilitate teacher and student learning. Teachers are encouraged to follow along and learn how to use SketchNoting as a tool to better deliver all academic lessons and even check for student understanding. Students learn to summarize main ideas and capture important information from classroom lessons. Simple tips and tricks are taught in an easy-to-understand format of working from verbal to visual when using this doodle friendly technique. This lesson can be applied to ANY subject matter: science, history, math, language arts, etc. Access to digital equipment for slideshow presentation is required. Presented by teaching artist Ruth Jatib O’Connor.

About SketchNoting: “SketchNoting is a higher order process of capturing information. It requires a combination of listening, thinking, and visualizing at the same time. It goes in a constant circular motion and pushes the listener to funnel through the information for the most important parts or patterns.” Quoted from Innovation Design in Education, ASIDE. GRADE: 8-12 FEE: $150 for introduction lesson (how-to lesson) 45 minutes

$350 for complete unit (intro & 1 hour implementation lesson) plus $1 art supply fee (no supply fee if students bring their own pencils, colors, and paper).


Some of West Alabama’s finest actors are available to tell a variety of tales or those that are appropriate to your current curriculum with advance notification. GRADES: K-6 FEE: $55


The Alabama Blues Project’s after-school Blues clubs introduce children to the Blues as an art form and teach how it has influenced modern music.  Children get hands-on experience with traditional instruments, such as the guitar, drums, harmonica, keyboard, and microphone.  At the culmination of our 10-week programs, parents and family members are also exposed to Blues music and history during free student concerts. This is a multi-week residency program. GRADES: K-8. FEE: $3500

THE ART GARAGE – Classroom Visits

We offer basic art classes to ages 18 months through 5th grade. A typical lesson is 30 minutes long These classes can be scheduled weekly, bi-monthly, or monthly. The Art Garage will provide an instructor and will bring the supplies needed for each week’s project.
GRADES: PreK-5. FEE: $150 per each session for up to 25 students. ($150 for 25 additional students).  Estimates are sent for the number of children estimated.  Once approved, we will send an invoice that is due on the date of service. Outside of the Tuscaloosa city limits there is a $35 travel fee.

THE ART GARAGE: One-time Special Event
The Art Garage can visit schools to offer a special event type of class. The class can
be geared towards a schoolwide special event or a holiday. We will provide an instructor and all art supplies needed other than tables, chairs, and cleaning supplies. Teacher assistance will be required. Each project would last about 45 minutes.
GRADES: Pre-K-5. FEE:  For a Canvas project $9 per child. Estimates are sent for the number of children estimated.  Once approved, we will send an invoice that is due on the date of service. Outside of Tuscaloosa city limits there is a $35 travel fee.