Arts for Learning Maryland

Arts for Learning Maryland: Impact Evaluation of Multiple Programs

Logo for arts for learning Maryland

Team: Steven J. Holochwost, Dennie Palmer Wolf

Founded in Baltimore in 1950, Arts for Learning Maryland, formerly Young Audiences of Maryland, transforms the lives and education of Maryland youth through the arts by connecting educators, professional artists, and communities.

WolfBrown has had the opportunity to work closely with Arts for Learning Maryland for many years across multiple projects, developing a collaborative partnership centered around program evaluation in educational settings. The evaluations are designed to empower Arts for Learning’s staff and collaborators to not only implement decisions and strategies based on the findings, but also to collect and implement the measures and methods themselves.  

Summer Arts Learning Academy & Arts Learning Academy

Team: Steven J. Holochwost, Jane Culbert, Anusha Mohan

In 2023, Arts for Learning Maryland announced that it has been awarded a US Department of Education grant to demonstrate arts-integrated school programs that improve academic performance and emotional well-being of students in low-wealth schools. Stacie Sanders Evans, President and CEO of Arts for Learning Maryland, enthused, “This grant is a testament to our artists, staff, and board, as well as the powerful work happening within our community. It recognizes the two strategies that have been at the heart of our Summer Arts for Learning Academy— collaborative lesson planning and co-teaching—and that has resulted in academic and personal growth for nearly 9,000 students at Title I schools. Start with the Art will build additional evidence of the transformational impact that our work has on children so that even more children will have access to this kind of learning in the future.Read more about the Education Innovation and Research Program grant here.

More information will be added on this ongoing project soon.

Bloomberg Arts Internship

Team: Dennie Palmer Wolf, Steven J. Holochwost, Kathleen Hill, Abigale Franco, Anusha Mohan

Arts for Learning Maryland is the programmatic partner for the Bloomberg Arts Internship (BAI) in Baltimore, Maryland. WolfBrown has been working with Bloomberg Philanthropies and its various programmatic partners across the country to assess the impact of the BAI program on its interns. 

To learn more about the full evaluation, visit the BAI Project Highlight. 

To learn more about the BAI program in Baltimore, visit Arts for Learning’s website

Baby ArtsPlay! 

Team: Steven J. Holochwost, Kathleen Hill

Baby ArtsPlay! is a program that originated at Wolf Trap’s Institute for Early Learning through the Arts in Maryland. Taught by local teaching artists, the Baby Artsplay! residency program provides children and their parents/caregivers with classes that enhance learning and development through music, movement, and drama. In Baltimore, the residencies occurred in Judy Centers around the city in collaboration with existing early childhood programs. 

In July 2019, Arts for Learning Maryland partnered with WolfBrown to conduct a formative evaluation of its iteration of the Baby ArtsPlay! program. The goals of this formative evaluation were to:

  • Clarify the objectives of the program;
  • Understand how the program was being implemented in practice; and, 
  • Gather information from the program’s primary stakeholders, identified as children’s caregivers and educators, as well as the administrators of the Judy Centers that hosted the program.

With the outbreak of the coronavirus in early 2020, the implementation of the Baby ArtsPlay! program shifted to a virtual format, and therefore the methods of the evaluation had to change as well. 

Building on the findings from the fidelity of implementation virtual study in 2020, WolfBrown worked alongside program leadership to update the measure to include both evaluative and descriptive components during the spring of 2022. 

Results of the evaluation were shared internally with Arts for Learning staff to support continued program development.