SchoolArts Magazine

DEC 2012

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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Lasting Effects I have received calls and e-mails from people in other states who want to know how to do something similar— I've even received calls from former students. When a national publication did a story about one of our adventures, I received a letter and a check from a man in Washington State, a dentist who had seen the article and had graduated from one of the tiny Travel Antics elementary schools we visited. One year, while making masks at Project Van Go continues to prothe Atlanta School, the teacher volmote self-esteem for many of my unteered to have her face plastered at-risk students and student-teachers first. When the phone rang, a young new to the teaching student answered profession. It also and said, "the teacher education was cannot come to the happening beyond the brings art to disenfranchised schools phone because she is confines of classroom that do not have the plastered." It was the walls, and all of us were benefit of art curricuschool district office changed for the better. lums, art supplies, or on the phone. art teachers. I'd like Another year, to believe that the impact of sharing while ironing wax from batiks at the art across the curriculum has brought Arbon School, the smoke from the more changes into more lives than irons triggered the fire alarm. We can be measured! exited to the cold and snowy schoolyard and witnessed the scene of a Jennifer Williams was Idaho Teacher of cattle drive, the animals walking the Year 2002, National Unsung Hero and mooing across the tiny parking 2000, and U.S. West Teacher of the Year lot. Volunteer firefighters from miles 1993. She continues Van Go with the student teachers she has through her superviaround came to a scene of children sion of student teachers for George Fox with tie-dyed hands standing among a University and Boise State University. hundred head of cattle. ferretw@msn.com wore jeans, many wore cowboy hats, and all wore a smile, because we were bringing them something. "Nobody comes to see us from the outside world!" exclaimed one young student. We got to know the kids in these schools, and today, many of those students are now the parents of the students we continue to visit. ing and amazing crew, and my students were no different. Throughout the years, we faced elk, skunks, flat tires, getting lost, getting car sick, no brakes, no bathrooms, spilled paint, and windy and dusty mountain roads. Soon, though, students, many of them at-risk, began to open their eyes and souls to teaching, volunteerism, and education beyond the classroom walls. My students became teachers for the day. The adventures were abundant as we slept in schoolhouses, dug pits to fire pottery, made natural dyes from the local soil, played baseball in mountain grasses, and ate dinner to a chorus of coyotes. Education was happening beyond the confines of classroom walls, and all of us were changed for the better. Some of the students we visited drove tractors, snowmobiles, or trucks to school by themselves. Everyone schoolartsonline.com 35

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