Arts Literacy NOLA

KID smART created Arts Literacy NOLA to engage students in a deeper understanding of literary texts through the arts. The program focuses on improving literacy skills for students in grades K-3, and is based on the Performance Cycle- a framework developed at Brown University that has been proven to impact both literacy and social-emotional skills in students. KID smART offers the program in partnership with Arthur Ashe Charter School and Langston Hughes Academy.

Why is it important to read at grade level by the end of the 3rd grade? By 4th grade, the bulk of the curriculum in all subjects is delivered through written materials so children who struggle to read are at risk of falling further and further behind. Research shows that achieving this milestone comes with a lifetime of benefits for students, including higher high school graduation rates and increased earning potential.

“I’ve seen certain students who’ve had a lot of trouble engaging with my traditional way of teaching significantly improve their ability to remain engaged in the lesson and demonstrate what they’ve learned through the arts. KID smART’s nontraditional approach to teaching content helps students practice the importance of working and learning together while having fun and feeling comfortable with outward expression.”

—3rd grade teacher, Langston Hughes Academy

Teachers in Dance-Integrated Workshop

Arts Literacy Resources


Teachers in Visual Art Workshop

Arts Literacy Handbook

The handbook is a collection of ideas and activities from other teachers and artists. This handbook includes the activities that have worked best over the years in different educational contexts. Each activity is part of a larger process represented by the Performance Cycle.

Click here to view


Arts Lit Blog

KID smART teaching artists are documenting student learning on our blog.

Step inside KID smART Arts Literacy Classrooms


For more information on Arts Literacy NOLA, email  or call (504) 940-1994.

Arts Literacy NOLA is supported by Baptist Community Ministries