ArtsAltoona’s After-School Arts Program (ASAP) has been busy! I can hardly keep up with all the happenings. In addition to having some amazing classes, last week ArtsAltoona was invited to share all about ASAP on four local radio stations. In today’s article, I wanted to share what the students at Evergreen Manors have been learning.
In the weeks before Valentine’s Day, Sarah Baumbach from the Maker Studio worked with students to make 158 valentines. The goal was to make a card for each apartment in Evergreen Manor. The challenge was a little overwhelming at first for students, but they soon became excited about the project. They were asking Sarah how to draw things and looking at card ideas online. The cards had cute illustrations and puns, drawn and colored by the students. In the first week, sixty-two valentines were created.
The pressure was on for the second and final week of cardmaking. The students worked quickly helping each other color, draw, and think up of new card ideas. Some students even went to get fellow friends and neighbors to help complete the cards. Once all of the cards were made, it was time to deliver them to the residents of Evergreen Manors. Here is what Stephenie Schroth, Director of Education, said about the experience. “The love that these kids have for others is phenomenal. They were so excited that they literally ran door-to-door delivering the cards. Halfway through, we saw an ambulance pull up to one of the complexes. Immediately, the kids wanted to give each of the emergency workers a card. Walking back, a man said that he was so surprised when he opened his door to see a handmade card. He shared it with his 98-year-old grandmother who lives with him. He said that her face beamed with joy as she clutched the card tightly in her hands. If we were able to bring a smile to just one person in the community, we accomplished our mission.”
Brian Miller, an area poet, is our most recent teacher. Last week, Brian shared some of the poems from his book The Blue and White Tent. He then explained how to write haikus and shared some examples. Each student was allowed to choose a photo from nature such as birds, flowers, forests, and waterfalls to help inspire their writing. The students worked together to title their haikus, count syllables, and correct spelling. At the end of the class, a total of ten haikus were written. Brian will be binding the students’ poems into a booklet for this weeks class.
In the following weeks, students will learn how to make jewelry, coil baskets, and Zentangle designs. Be on the lookout for my next education article where I will give further ASAP updates. If you have any questions about ArtsAltoona’s after-school arts program or would like to get involved leave a comment below.