By Jim Speirs, Executive Director, Arts South Dakota

The arts should be a part of every classroom—and the arts can make every subject fun to learn. That’s one lesson of the Arts Education Institute, being held July 15-18 on the campus of Northern State University in Aberdeen.

Over 100 South Dakota teachers, administrators and arts advocates will gather in Aberdeen to celebrate the 20th anniversary of this annual inspirational week of arts education workshops. For 20 years, the Arts Education Institute (AEI) has offered educational and fun-filled learning to infuse the arts into classrooms and curriculum development. This year 24 hands-on art workshops are bringing excitement to the Pre-K through 12th grade educators at AEI. But it’s not just teachers who are adding art to their lives—anyone who loves high quality workshops is invited to attend the annual sessions.

The Arts Education Institute is popular with teachers, administrators and parents. The workshops illustrate ways in which the arts can be integrated into curricula, but even more importantly, AEI energizes educators, inspires innovation and connects to culture. Participants in AEI network with other education professionals, learn links to vital resources and share great ideas that work in classrooms throughout South Dakota.

For school districts and their teachers, AEI is an affordable, high quality professional development experience that is relevant and directly applicable to every academic subject. A creative break for teachers, AEI also provides class credits for educators that help keep them current with educational trends and prepare them for the year ahead.

Arts South Dakota is proud to be a sponsor of the Arts Education Institute, along with the South Dakota Arts Council and Northern State University. By providing teachers with an inspiring way to bring arts into the classroom, AEI helps ensure that all South Dakota students experience the arts as part of their education.

Whether you are an educator, an artist, an arts advocate or want to learn more about the arts in South Dakota, visit