Franklin School Takes Art into their School Garden

 Every single Franklin Elementary student took part in the ceramic art project over the winter, filling their new garden with color before the springtime plantings. 

Every single Franklin Elementary student took part in the ceramic art project over the winter, filling their new garden with color before the springtime plantings. 

This post comes from Franklin Elementary second grade teacher Frances Bonne't, one of the teacher champions for the school garden. She was so excited about the beautiful collaboration that took place at Franklin Elementary this winter, that she wanted to share it with you all. Here she is . . . 

Franklin Elementary has moved back home! In the 2016 - 2017 school year, a new school was built in place of the old. This past fall, staff and students started our school year in a brand new building.

With the new building came a new school garden. It was a blank slate for us to create an outdoor learning area. At our first community work day, parents, students, and staff installed planting beds complete with soil and made a few adjustments before the cold of winter set in.

The garden committee met to discuss the potential of our new space. It was too late in the season to do any planting, but we knew we wanted to get all students and staff out to the garden to get acquainted with this nurturing part of our school. We also wanted to find a way to bring color and life to our blank slate.

We came up with the idea to collaborate with our creative and talented school art teacher Mrs. Wallace. After figuring out logistics and funding, we had a plan. We would do an art installation in our garden with every student from our school would contribute to. Throughout the winter, Mrs. Wallace worked with each grade level to create their own theme for clay garden sculptures. Each student was able to make their own unique sculpture within that theme. After they were painted, fired, and glazed, some accessories were applied. Bugs got antennas, butterflies were set into flight atop painted dowels, ladybugs rested on their leaves, and birds were given nests.

One-by-one, teachers took their classes out to the garden to place their sculptures in their grade level garden bed adding their contribution to the school-wide garden art installation. The result was a colorful way to introduce students to their new garden and further strengthen our school community and pride. This month, Garden City Harvest will be taking each grade level back out to the garden to do spring planting. At this point, students will get to take out their artwork and plant the seeds they will watch grow. Come Fall 2018, we will see it coming to life in a whole new way.