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What is Public Art is SmART?

Norman Arts Council’s Public Art is SmART program uses Norman’s  public art as the catalyst for dynamic educational resources  created to encourage educators of every grade level and subject area to enhance their teaching and students’ educational experiences using various, wonderful pieces of accessible works of art.

Public Art – What is it?

Public art enhances  Norman’s landscape.

                   What are the benefits? Public art visually benefits everyone and can positively affect tourism, economic development, and our quality of life. Since it is free to enjoy and is easily accessible to all, it can be a lively springboard for dialogue and education.

                  Norman’s public art -- Our collection of public art is in all parts of Norman and includes a variety of mediums, subjects, and styles.  Click here to connect with Museums Without Walls for information about all our works of public art including an interactive map.

Classroom Resources


Prezi  is a dynamic way to present information. Our resources are primarily based on a Prezi format. You can either teach directly from them or peruse them for lessons or inspiration. Follow the path or click to zoom into parts that interest you.

Hard Copy

We also offer PDF versions of each presentation here ; or if you prefer, you can call the NAC office (405. 360.1162) and make arrangements to pick-up a copy or have one mailed to you.

Outline of our Prezis

Our presentations are all structured in the same way:

  • Introduction – Art details, including location, artist information, general description, photographs
  • Lesson Ideas (2 ideas per subject) – Art, Social Studies, Language Arts, Math, Science, Misc.
  • Related books
  • Oklahoma Standards

Original Content

We create unique lessons based on the subject, location, appearance, medium, and symbolism of each piece of public art.

Interactive Resources

In our lessons, we also connect you to educational interactive resources. These are perfect for iPads, Smartboard activities or use in media centers or computer labs.

Related Books

Each resource contains a list of picture and chapter books that are appropriate for a variety of grades and reading levels.


How to Use our Resources

Our resources can be used in a variety of ways. There is no limit to how you approach the artwork or the lessons and activities we offer either in your classroom or in partnership with another teacher in your school. You could:

Start with a topic or subject

For example,  geometry. The Geometry of Quilts is a lesson from the Horses in Motion resource that relates to piecing together triangles to create a quilt pattern.

Or you could:

Start with the art

Begin with Horses in Motion and teach about the bridge, the artist, and the symbolism of the enhancements.


List of Projects with Resources

Horses In Motion.jpg

Horses in Motion
by Steven Weitzman
at I-35 and Rock Creek Road, Cleveland County, Oklahoma

The expansive length of Rock Creek Road Bridge, 431 feet, affords a unique opportunity to show representations of the City of Norman’s industries in breeding quarter horses and crafting saddles highlighted by Native American design influences.

This bridge was the first of an eight bridge master plan developed specifically for the I-35 Corridor in Norman, Oklahoma with each one inspired by either the history, architectural, flora or fauna, or the industry of this region.

Photo by Leonardo Manzo
Copyright 2018
Creative Design Resolutions, Inc.

Indian Grass Square.jpg



Splash Square WEB.jpg

by mark aeling
at Westwood Family Aquatic Center


Rick Sinnett Mural Square.jpg

Norman Red-Tail Hawk Mural
by Rick Sinnett


Topics and Activities Covered: Horses In Motion


Measuring Horses

A Handy Measure
Material Request

The Geometry of Quilts
Material Request

Quilt Activity Using Triangles
Material Request

Quilt Block Symmetries

Space and Shape in Quilts



Bridge Basics

Bridge Building (Lesson Plan)

Design Lab

PBS Building Big

Westpoint Bridge Designer

Teach Engineering

Pigment Properties of Plants
Material Request

Equine Science for Kids


Social Studies

The Trail of Tears

Five Family Stories from the Trail of Tears

Primary Sources: 
A Soldier’s Account of the Cherokee Trail of Tears

Edward S. Curtis’ The Norman American Indian


Related Books

Check Out Books from NAC
Material Request


Lesson Plan for Bridge Building
Material Request

Design Lab:
Bridge Break Competition

Material Request

Design Lab:
Bridge Break Activity

Material Request

Teach Engineering:
Tensile & Compressive Forces Activity

Material Request

Teach Engineering:
Straw Bridges Activity

Material Request

Teach Engineering:
Load It Up!

Material Request

Teach Engineering:
Shallow & Deep Foundations Activity

Material Request

Teach Engineering:
Break the Mold Activity

Material Request

Teach Engineering: 
Cost Comparison Activity

Material Request



Explore Art:
Charles Russell

Weave a Paper Basket
Material Request


Language Arts

Symbolism of the Bridge

How Strong is a Horse?
Material Request

How Do Quilts Tell Stories?
Material Request

Why Do Horses Wear Shoes?
Material Request

Horse Idioms


Oklahoma Standards

Our resources correlate standards in Visual Arts, Math, Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies. Many standards only change in the depth and breadth as grade levels progress. Generally, standard numbers are given where the base standard applies, although wording might be slightly different amongst grade levels.

Public Art is smART - How It Works


We want to provide you with the materials your students need for doing the activities included in our resources!   You can order them from us and we will deliver them to you.

Following each activity you will find a form to request materials for that project.  This form includes the activity name, a list of the supplies so you can indicate which of those you need, number of students, to whom and where they should be delivered, by what date, and contact information for any questions.

Complete the form, send it to Cher at the Norman Arts Council, and when she receives your request, she will send confirmation to you. We must have at least 1 weeks’ notice before the materials are needed. Please allow for holidays when planning for delivery of materials.



You will receive a color 22 x 28” poster of the subject work of public art when you order materials for projects in our resources.



Each of our resources includes a Related Books section. We have sets of each title at the Norman Arts Council that are available for you to borrow for a 1 month period of time. Call Cher at the NAC (405.360.1162) to check availability of the books and schedule when you would like to check them out. Availability is limited, so please plan accordingly.

When we deliver your book order, we ask that you are prepared to schedule an appointment in 1 month for us to pick-up the books.



We need your input! It is vital for the effectiveness of Public Art is SmART that we can properly assess its impact on teachers and students. In order to make certain that it is always beneficial for you and to enable us to qualify and quantify our results; we ask that you complete the program survey that you will find here.

In that survey, you will find a place for you to tell us about any positive, meaningful stories related to the impact of our program on you, your students, or perhaps a member of a student’s family. Please take the time to relate those stories to us.

 We want to be able to continue to use Norman’s public art to help you and your students in the best possible manner. 


Involving Artists in Residency 

If you would like to complement your lessons by having a creative, teaching artist work with your students, the Norman Arts Council can help you find the right artist and Sudden Opportunity Support grants are available to provide help with the funding.

Additionally, the following organizations have artists in residence programs and possible funding opportunities:



If you have any technical difficulties or problems with our resources, we want to solve them as quickly as possible. Contact Norman Arts Council by phone (405.360.1162), email at or fill out the form below.



Please let us know if you have any additional comments at or by filling out the form below.

Name *