Art is for Everyone!

by Michael Porter
The Young Artist Forum is a grand exhibit that includes at least one art piece by every student at JCDS. Opening day on March 16 was very special because the older students got to tour the exhibit with their "buddies" in the lower grades.
"It's pretty good," said fourth grader Bo B. "There are a lot of masterpieces."

The task of selecting the very best examples of student work falls to Art Specialist, Alli Flores.
"I would display every piece of art that each student has created this year if I could," Ms. Flores said. "I am so proud of our students and their work."
Hundreds of 2D and 3D art examples make this exhibition worthy of a modern gallery. Many standout works show the young artists' incredible imagination, as Ms. Flores encouraged them to work with passion and creativity.
"Starting in 2nd grade the art curriculum connects heavily with our Global Studies units," Ms. Flores explained.
For example, in 5th grade, the students study Ancient Greece. Ms. Flores teaches about Ancient Greek pottery and Greek mythology to incorporate into Greek pottery prints. Some of these are on display in the Young Artist Forum.
Of all of the projects this year, Ms. Flores is particularly proud of the 6th graders, who made clay pies out of slabs and bowls made using the pottery wheel. She regards these as the culmination of their artistic skills over the years at JCDS.
"And they look so yummy!" she added.
Another standout project was the fantastic, whimsical self-portraits painted by Kindergarteners.
"I love how they visually depict what the student looks like while integrating skills like drawing from realism, color theory, proportion, scale, and creativity," she said.

Ms. Flores notes that visiting the art show with their older buddies adds practice to observations skills, social skills, art critiquing, pride in craftsmanship, and art appreciation. Plus bonding time with their buddies, of course.
"We prepare for this by talking about how we might act in an art museum, and how to talk with their buddies about art," said Ms. Flores.
Ms. Flores believes that art is an integral part of a child's overall development. At JCDS, art is a vital part of the curriculum at all grade levels.
"Creative thinking and problem-solving is rooted in the arts and essential in today's world," Ms. Flores said. Many of the art projects the students work on during the year are inspired by academic classes.