Scholars-in-Residence Built Connections for Students Across the State

The Scholars-in-Residence program paired experts from different disciplines – like a biologist with a poet or a sculptor with a historian – and brought them into classrooms to spark new cross-disciplinary connections.

Natural biologist Larry Eickstaedt and poet Emily Warn in residence at the Dixie School

Natural biologist Larry Eickstaedt and poet Emily Warn were Scholars-in-Residence at the Dixie School in Eastern Washington in 1985.

Humanities Washington is celebrating our 40th anniversary with Forty Years of Washington Stories. Each week on Spark, we’ll offer a snapshot from our past, sharing forty years of stories that have helped shape the humanities in Washington state.

Each school that hosted Humanities Washington’s Scholars-in-Residence program received a matched pair of a specialized scholar and an artist. Beginning in 1983, clay sculptors arrived in classrooms alongside art historians and pianists discussed music with jazz critics in week-long residences across the state of Washington.

From the elementary to the high school level, the pairings were designed to help students see the connections between the creative and the academic. At the Dixie School in Eastern Washington, natural biologist Larry Eickstaedt and poet Emily Warren worked with elementary school students to conduct science projects and read poetry. In the description of their project, the two wrote that “Observations of the natural world are used to make entries into a naturalist’s journal and are incorporated into stories and poems. The lesson plan helps students to see the connection between scientific experiment and poetic expression.”

The program reached over 30 Washington schools during its time. Whether it was sculpture and history or science and poetry, the Scholars-in-Residence program helped students discover links between the arts and their other studies.

1 thought on “Scholars-in-Residence Built Connections for Students Across the State”

  1. John Roth says:

    This is a program that might be due for a revival in 2013 and on.

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