Arts & Smarts Happenings

There’s been so much happening around Patchwork lately that it’s impossible to keep up with it all in my Patchwork Updates. You’d best stop by to really get caught up!

For one, all kinds of things have been happening in the children’s program. Art activities have included a whole series focusing on:

The series is meant to stretch the children’s perceptions about art. So far, they’ve turned sunglasses into sculptures (see my Feb 10 update), they’ve made HUGE sculptures from leftover Styrofoam chunks, they’ve made sculptures out of driftwood and seashells, they created ceramic tea cups, and more! Maybe even a beautiful piece of veggie pizza created with Miss Kristen counts!

The tea cups were used last week for our annual Japanese Tea Ceremony. The children have been learning about different Asian cultures and trying Asian food. On March 15, a Japanese family who participated in last summer’s Sculpture Weeks came to share more about the Japanese Tea Ceremony and everyone tried some tea and homemade Japanese sweets.

For many years now, Thursdays have meant Book Club with volunteers from Aldersgate United Methodist Church. It’s a time of many small and wonderful moments. One child made a special connection with one particular volunteer and looks for him every week. Recently, she made him some art to take home. A couple weeks ago, Jane caught a moment when two children who both struggle in school were sitting together reading a book and having a great time doing it.

The Book Club volunteers and Lisa have also been working together to give some of our more advanced clay artists some special opportunities. There are some special books on ceramics techniques that are available during Book Club. After the children read about ceramics, they can go out to the studio with Lisa to put those advanced techniques into practice.

Tutoring continues with a great core group of volunteers. Dixie reports that recently we were able to give one girl a little extra help where it was needed. The girl’s grandmother told Dixie that her granddaughter could really use a third day of tutoring each week to help her keep up in her classes and that her grandmother was willing to pay someone to do that third day. Dixie happened to have one slot open on the right day and offered it to the grandmother who was very happy for the opportunity.

The grandmother added that whenever she asks her granddaughter what the best part of her day was, the girl always replies, “Patchwork!”

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