K-12 Education Programs

Des Moines Performing Arts believes that all students deserve access to high quality artistic experiences as part of a complete education. Studies show that the arts foster creativity, enhance critical thinking, and help students make important connections to the world around them.

Applause Series

Applause Series school performances at Des Moines Performing Arts introduce students to the wonder of the performing arts while also reinforcing curriculum objectives. The school matinees are accessibly priced at just $1 per ticket and are attended by more than 50,000 students and educators annually. Attending schools receive a performance-based curriculum guide that includes important background information, activities and discussion questions that enhance students’ understanding of the show.

Performance Add-Ons

Students who attend performances at Des Moines Performing Arts have the opportunity to deepen the learning through special extension opportunities that reinforce the performance’s themes or academic content. Des Moines Performing Arts partners with non-profit organizations and local teaching artists to develop these opportunities.

Professional Development for Educators

Des Moines Performing Arts provides exemplary professional development training for teachers through its partnership with the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Taught by national experts, the program provides educators with powerful teaching strategies that combine the arts with core curriculum areas – giving traditional subjects new life and fostering students’ enthusiasm for learning.

Through the generous support of our Members, Des Moines Performing Arts' school programs are offered for little to no cost to participating schools.