In this article, I describe how art instruction in a community art program was made more meaningful by relating pedagogy to real-life events in the community. The article discusses programming activities in the Children of the Future (COTF) art program at Sawyer Recreation Center, located in a low-income housing project historically known as Poindexter Village in Columbus, Ohio. The observations discussed here were made in my longitudinal study of COTF at Sawyer between 1996 and 2006. The program’s activities included studio art production, community service, and participation in local cultural events.

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