At Rooftop, the arts enrich the lives of both our students and their families. The arts provide a common ground for expression and communication, and are effective tools for building a sense of inclusiveness and community, or what we affectionately call “Rooftop Spirit.” Several annual traditions serve to foster stronger home-school ties, and create a place of welcome for all members of Rooftop’s family.
Family Art Nights
At these evening arts events, the entire family is invited to come to school to share a light supper, make art together, and build community ties. Rooftop hosts two Family Art Nights in the fall. The first is a Kindergarten Family Art Night, which provides an intimate setting for new families to get to know each other. Our All-School Family Art Night offers the opportunity for families across the grades to meet and make art together.
Often, Family Art Nights’ activities are led by visiting artists, creating connections between the school and the larger Bay Area artistic community. Family Art Nights have been led by Aiko Cuneo (Rooftop’s Art Program founder), Circus Finelli, Transit Dance founder Michael Koob, and improvisational arts with Stage Write. One year, the intersection of the art and science of ants was explored with a visit by Dr. Brian Fisher, an entomologist and “Science Hero” from the California Academy of Sciences.
Mayeda Media Night
Named for beloved retired principal Nancy Mayeda, who fostered Rooftop’s spirit of community and service, Mayeda Media Night are organized by middle school students in Rooftop’s Service Learning and Student Government clubs and support by staff mentors.
The evening event features screening of films created by the students and live performances of Rooftop’s student rock bands, nurtured by our after-school guitar and rock band classes offered by Blue Bear School of Music. The event is organized a charity fundraising event, with students using their creativity for philanthropic purposes. In past years, proceeds have benefited disaster relief efforts in Haiti and Japan, as well as Pencils of Promise, an organization that builds schools in the developing world and trains socially conscious young leaders to take action at home and abroad.
Family Art Homework
Every year at Rooftop, an art activity is designed to give parents and their children an opportunity to explore and share their identity, and to discover the way that the arts inspire deeper inquiry through creativity and play. Each family’s artwork is gathered and combined into a collaborative community art installation at Rooftop. Past years’ community art pieces were also shared with the public as part of SFUSD’s Young at Art at the deYoung Museum.
Yard art is available to students weekly at lunch on the Burnett school yard.