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This fall, students have been enjoying all kinds of materials and projects in Lower School Art. Students have been drawing, making origami and collages, painting, beading, and designing lush pom-poms. Each grade has its own set of developmentally appropriate projects that foster their creative, cognitive, and motor skills all while offering them choice, agency, and independence. It has been especially fulfilling for me to see the students’ joy as they immerse themselves in the process of art-making and follow their ideas. Fourth Grader Ken put it beautifully: “I feel calm when I make art, and it also provides entertainment!”

Some special highlights of the fall have been making recycled “Beautiful Oops” art with the Kindergartners, self-portrait sandwich collages with the First Graders, creating a sea of origami creatures in Second Grade, watching students develop beaded bracelets and creatures in Third Grade, witnessing pom-poms come to life in fourth grade, and practicing advanced drawing techniques in the fifth grade. I’ve also been fascinated by students’ insights in our discussions about artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Deborah Roberts, Firelei Báez, and Claude Monet. Every day I’m inspired by the community at Dwight-Englewood, and I’m so excited for what’s next.