Smart Art Bites: A Rozsa Center Class Act Series

We are thrilled to announce a collaboration between PLDL and the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts that offers unique online learning opportunities for K-5 students this year.

Smart Art Bites offers digital bite-sized arts lessons for families and teachers to incorporate the arts into everyday learning. Each episode focuses on a different art form taught by professional artists.

Kids can learn and practice each bite-sized arts skill again and again, away from the screen. Each episode comes with a list of books (find them here at PLDL!) to help young learners dive deeper into each topic.

Smart Art Bites will be posted on this site every two weeks beginning on January 12, 2021. You can also find the series on YouTube and on the Rozsa Center’s website.


Let’s make a BEAT with Teao and Ras – Episode 9

Performing artists Teao Sense and Ras K’dee (Audiopharmacy) teach beatboxing basics and how to make your own percussive shaker at home.

    Let’s sing and DANCE with Cecilia – Episode 8

    Join dancer/musician Cecilia Ortega from Miami Beach, FL as she teaches a dance step to son jarocho music from her native Veracruz, Mexico.

      Let’s get into COSTUME with Mary – Episode 7

      This Smart Art Bites episode teaches the theater skill of a “quick change.” A quick change is when actors need to change costumes quickly between scenes. Join Mary and Sophie as they teach you this fun skill!

        Let’s Get Crafty with Tiffany – Episode 6

        Join Tiffany Lange, St. Paul visual artist, in learning how to create a quilting block pattern with rubbing designs.

        Note to educators: Tiffany Lange, visual artist working out of St. Paul, MN, provides some background on the history of quilting. She then teaches students how to create a paper quilting block design that incorporates rubbings.

          Let’s Sing in Spanish with Lucia – Episode 5


          In this episode, Lucia will teach Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in Spanish, drawing cultural connections with a folk song in common for her native Peru and America. Lucia willl demonstrate the difference in tone and timbre between saxophone and ewi, concluding with a performance.

          Note to educators: Lucia is a professional musician, band leader and educator. She has given master classes in Peru and America, and her fun and energetic approach is engaging for all ages. Lucia holds a Bachelor of Music Degree in Woodwind Performance. You can find her online here.

          Did you know… most people in the world speak more than one language? Being bilingual (speaking two languages) can improve your memory and promote outside-the-box thinking.

          Want to learn Spanish? Check out these titles here at PLDL:

          Let’s Make Some Puppets with Trish – Episode 4


          In this Smart Art Bites episode, Trish Helsel makes puppetry fun by showing us how to bring shadow puppets to life! Make your own puppets and put on a show!

          Did you know shadow puppetry is considered the oldest form of puppetry in the world? It’s an ancient form of storytelling that has origins in China, India, Nepal, Greece, and Turkey.

          Want to learn more about puppetry? Check out these PLDL titles about shadows and puppets:

          Let’s Make Some Music with Janna – Episode 3


          In today’s smART Art Bites episode, Jana will teach the song, Great Big Stars, followed by the sign language for the song. The song is traditionally in the lullaby style, and Jana will demonstrate how adding a beat, some bass and harmonies can completely change the style of a song and make you want to dance.

          Jana Nyberg is a band director/music educator (K-12 license) and jazz/neo soul/pop singer who also plays flute and piano. After teaching in the schools for 11 years, Jana is now focusing on her performance career, as well as educational clinician work and teaching privately.

          Want to learn more about sign language? Check out these titles from the PLDL shelves:

          Let’s Draw Cartoons with Terri – Episode 2


          In this episode of smART Art Bites, Terri Frew shows us how to draw a cartoon dog – woof woof! Terri’s fun approach with cartooning will engage learners of all ages.

          Note to educators: Terri Frew holds a Master’s of Fine Arts degree and is an artist and educator. She is a Professor in the Visual and Performing Arts Department at Michigan Technological University.

          Want to learn more about drawing for children? Check out these titles from PLDL:

          Let’s go BOOM with LA – Episode 1


          In this smART Art Bites episode, LA teaches a beat using a low sound and high sound that you can play on objects in your home. Watch as LA jams out for a drum set performance and see how the beat he taught evolves into something totally different – and totally awesome!

          Want to learn more about drumming and music for children? Check out these titles from PLDL:

          Note to educators: Arthur LA Buckner is a Minneapolis-based performer and educator with a Master’s Degree in Drum Performance. Whether teaching or performing, his infectious personality and passion for music immediately draw you in. He co-hosts the PBS series Sound Field. Find more about the Rozsa Center’s Class Acts Program here.