Dixie Lee Hedrington

Dixie Lee Hedrington, a professional artist, quickly found there were limited creative outlets for people with disabilities when looking for enriching activities for her son, who is deaf. With a desire to create change, she founded Friends & Stars, Inc., a nonprofit dedicated to enhancing the well-being of special needs children and adults through inclusive arts programs. By providing individualized attention specific to each student’s needs in an environment of acceptance, Dixie and her team help them discover their unique artistic expression. She also works with museums and public spaces to display her students’ pieces. Through her efforts, participants gain confidence and pride, and many have gone on to pursue a career in the arts. Dixie’s talent and passion for teaching demonstrates that limitations can be conquered when you are willing to try.

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Arts Disciplines: Visual Art

Core Content Curriculum Areas: Visual Art

Specialized Content Areas: Arts Integration, ELL (English Language Learners)

Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Adults

Special Populations: ELL (English Language Learners), At-risk Students, Special Needs Students

Pre-Service Learning and Professional Development: Post-Secondary/Pre-Service Learning

Geographic Availability: South Georgia, Middle Georgia

Program Fees:

  • Workshops: $100 per hour
  • Residencies: $50 per hour

Artistic Profile:

Dixie Lee Hedrington, a professional artist, quickly found there were limited creative outlets for people with disabilities when looking for enriching activities for her son, who is deaf. With a desire to create change, she founded Friends & Stars, Inc., a nonprofit dedicated to enhancing the well-being of special needs children and adults through inclusive arts programs. By providing individualized attention specific to each student’s needs in an environment of acceptance, Dixie and her team help them discover their unique artistic expression. She also works with museums and public spaces to display her students’ pieces. Through her efforts, participants gain confidence and pride, and many have gone on to pursue a career in the arts. Dixie’s talent and passion for teaching demonstrates that limitations can be conquered when you are willing to try.

Teaching Experience:

  • 2006 – 2009 – Teaching Artist / Computer Art Generation (Caribbean)
  • 2009 – Present – Teaching Artist in Residence – with children & adults with special needs
  • 2010 – 2013 –  After-School / Special Population Art Instructor
  • 2014 & 2015 – Teaching Artist in Residence with the VSA-Florida
  • 2016 – Program Partner with VSA-Florida
  • 2017 – Georgia Council for the Arts Teaching Artist

Sample Programs:

  • Mosaic Tile Making:
    • Grade level: 6th-8th
    • Discipline: Visual art
    • Goal: To apply the concept, structure, and tools to create three dimensional artworks
    • Learning objectives: 1) To describe and observe art in nature, still life, and technology; 2) To apply sequencing procedures to art creation; 3) To appreciate art created by self and others; 4) To demonstrate appropriate use of art materials and supplies
    • Assessment/evaluation: 1) Student’s description of mosaic tile art creation; 2) Demonstration and use of new vocabulary; 3) Student’s ability to sequence steps in artwork creation; 4) Student’s demonstration of appreciation of these art works; and 5) Student’s ability to follow directions re: material and supply use and application
  • Senior Painting / Beading
    • An integrated learning experience for Seniors
    • Learning objective:  Introduction to acrylic painting techniques and new approaches in art creation.  A creative outlet for jewelry-making; special emphasis on color selection, design and overall presentation.  The Senior painting / Beading experience is performed in a familiar setting; usually a senior center or group home environment which assists in the art creation.  Senior art is displayed at local art galleries and public places.
  • Specialty Art Classes
    • After-school (for at-risk children/youth)
    • Art Therapy (for emotionally distressed youth)
    • Educational Goals:  Manage internal feelings through unexpected challenges and outcomes, and show individual uniqueness through success and accomplishments.
    • Learning objectives: Participants will 1) Describe and observe visual examples of art; 2) Apply sequencing procedures to 2-D art construction, 3) Appreciate art works generated by self and others, and 4) Demonstrate appropriate use of art materials and supplies.  Emphasis on: fine motor skills, spatial skills, decision-making skills, attention spans, imagination and problem-solving skills
  • Integrated Arts Training for Early Education Teachers
    • Educational goals: To define arts integration, describe the principles of arts-based learning, and demonstrate a model lesson using visual arts.
    • Learning objectives: The participants will 1) Identify different learning styles (Howard Gardner’s Eight Intelligences) and cognitive domains applied to facilitating youth and senior learning activities; 2) Apply state standards and Bloom’s Taxonomy in arts for learning formats; 3) Observe and discuss the essential elements of designing and arts-based learning program curriculum; 4) Explain and give examples of teaching strategies and learning outcomes in terms of knowledge, attitude, and behaviors; 5) Participate in a hands-on model lesson using elements of visual arts.
    • Assessment method: Instructor will observe and document the participants’ class performance and their understanding in identifying essentials of arts-integrated learning. A pre-/post-survey will be used to measure knowledge and skills gained at the conclusion of the training program.

Sample Lesson Plans/Study Guides:

Program Photos: