Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Education

May 10, 2013

Young artists showcased at St. Mary’s Art Fest

Greensburg — St. Mary’s Elementary School celebrated art of all forms with their annual Arts Fest Thursday, May 9.

The Arts Fest has been an annual tradition at St. Mary’s for years.

The event was started by art and music teacher Carol Blankman six years ago when she was strictly an art teacher.

Blankman believes that all students should be given the opportunity to explore their strengths and interests while at school, as well as widening their horizons by working on projects outside of their comfort zone. The Arts Fest showcased a wide variety of art, showing many different styles and mediums. In addition to the art projects, students did several songs and dances. Each grade performed a song and the school as a whole sang two songs together. The band performed two songs as well.

The halls throughout the school were decorated with art with many projects displayed near the students’ classroom so parents could see what each grade was working on during the year. Teachers were not in the classrooms, but the doors were left open so parents could see in-class art in addition to the projects. St. Mary’s staff thought the open house feel would be pleasant for everyone involved since the new building meant a lot of changes for teachers, students, and parents.

St. Mary’s Elementary School started the year in the newly completed building, which provided both joys and challenges for the students and staff. The school’s keyword this year was “flexible,” as everyone had to adjust to a new format for classes and events. Blankman said she has three regular volunteers that come in to help with the twice-weekly art class to assist with the students’ projects. Without the volunteers, it would be very difficult to accomplish so much, Blankman added.

Blankman said the increased space and large gymnasium were both a blessing and a challenge when it came to organizing the Arts Fest. She added that it was a huge help to have all the extra space to display the art, but figuring out where to put everything was an exercise in patience and creativity. Blankman said that with the first Arts Fest completed in the new building, next year’s event will be even better since the staff now knows what will and won’t work.

Blankman was concerned about setting up the gymnasium so that everyone in the audience could see the students properly and have enough space to move around, but the school’s new bleachers and gymnasium made it possible. The Arts Fest had a full house in attendance, filling most, if not all, of the 450 seats available for the event. Despite the massive turnout, which Blankman said was a very positive show of support for the students, the audience didn’t have any trouble seeing the performance. Blankman also added that the event wouldn’t have been possible without the army of volunteers that helped with matting and displaying artwork, setting up chairs, and other Arts Fest preparation.

There was entertainment for everyone at the 2013 Arts Fest. Aside from the artwork adorning the walls in the hallways, there were several tables set up in the cafeteria with sculptures and refreshments. The sixth grade class made ceramic food, which people were able to vote on for most realistic color and shape. The ballots will be totaled and a “People’s Choice” award will be given at the end of the year. The fifth grade made “wall pockets” from clay, which they had to fill with an item of their choice. Fourth graders did copper embossing and the third grade recycled old books into abstract art. Blankman said she had an interesting time trying to explain the concept of abstract art to the students, but the final products evidence her success. The second grade made papier mache “Angry Birds” and the first grade made 3D objects to go along with nursery rhymes. Kindergarten students completed artwork that was displayed in the halls.

There were far too many projects to mention, but it's likely anyone who attended St. Mary’s Arts Fest could attest to the massive amount of talent the students displayed. Blankman teaches art to all students from kindergarten to sixth grade, though the preschool does their own art.

There are, however, four teachers that cover music classes. Blankman teaches music to fourth, fifth, and sixth grades, Kathy Murray teaches second and third grades, Jen Blankman teaches first grade, and Jenny Smith teaches music to kindergarten. All of the grades gave exceptional performances at the Arts Fest, exhibiting a wide variety of styles from different genres of music and dance.

Organizer offered thanks to the time and dedication of St. Mary’s band teacher, Nick Parcell, without whom the band itself wouldn’t be possible. Parcell is the music teacher at Greensburg Junior High School and he travels to St. Mary’s three days a week to teach band for the sixth grade students. Parcell’s predecessor began this practice more than 10 years ago, providing access to band for St. Mary’s students.

The 2013 St. Mary’s Arts Fest was a success for all involved. Teachers and staff were able to see their hard work and planning come to fruition, as well as witnessing the students’ parents enjoy the art and music.

Students were able to showcase their talents and interests to their parents and receive the praise, and resulting confidence, that can be so important to children. Meanwhile, parents were able to see their children blossom through the arts.

Next year should be even better, Blankman said.

More photos from St. Mary’s 2013 Arts Fest can be found at www.greensburgdailynews.smugmug.com in the school gallery.

 

Contact: Amanda Browning 812-663-3111 x7004

 

1
Text Only
Education
  • COUNTY DIGEST COUNTY DIGEST South youth football camp set The South Decatur Youth Football Camp is set to take place later this month. The camp is set for Monday, June 16 through Thursday, June 19 (revised camp dates) at South Decatur High School, from 10:30 a.m.

    June 7, 2014

  • nws-gb060314-caleb newlin profile SDHS honors graduate steps onto next stage of life GREENSBURG -- South Decatur High School (SDHS) senior and student actor Caleb Newlin took his final bow from the SDHS stage with April's production of "Just Another High School Play." On Saturday morning, Newlin took yet another final bow, this one o

    June 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • edu-gb050614-SDHS prom pic 4 SDHS celebrates prom with fire and ice GREENSBURG - The students of South Decatur High School celebrated their prom Saturday, dancing the night away to a song of Fire and Ice. The theme was present everywhere at the banquet hall of the DCCS Corporation building, from the braziers holding

    May 6, 2014 6 Photos

  • SDHS mock crash a sobering event

    WESTPORT – The grisly scene was already set in the parking lot when the students of South Decatur High School (SDHS) began filing out to witness the annual Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) demonstration.

    May 2, 2014

  • SDES “Pinocchio” is great family fun

    WESTPORT – Fifth and sixth grade students at South Decatur Elementary School (SDES) will stage a production of Disney’s “My Son Pinocchio Jr.” at 7 p.m. on April 24 and 25 at the school.

    After the roles were cast, students began practicing under the tutelage of SDES music teacher Karen Meeker in September.

    April 16, 2014

  • AG-gb041114-Ag Day Fair pic 3- page 10 Ag Day planting seeds for future success

    GREENSBURG - The chill in the air didn't stop the fourth grade students of Decatur County from enjoying the 21st annual Ag Day Fair at the Decatur County Fairgrounds on Tuesday. More than 400 students, teachers and chaperones arrived at the fairgroun

    April 11, 2014 4 Photos

  • biz-gb040414-Goodspeed-Chadwick jpg Goodspeed-Chadwick named 2014 "Inspirational Woman" by IUPUI Columbus, IN--Dr. Julie Goodspeed-Chadwick, associate professor of English and director of the Office of Student Research at Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus (IUPUC) received the Inspirational Woman Award during a recent leadership recog

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • calvin.jpg NDES seeking help for student's surprise

    March 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lunch Menus Good Shepherd Christian Academy Monday - Chicken tetrazzini, green beans, mandarin oranges, cookie, milk Tuesday - Cheeseburger, oven fries, tomato slices, fruit salad, milk Wednesday - Pizza, corn, romaine salad, chocolate chip cookie, milk Thursda

    February 15, 2014

  • SDES students put on Christmas concert

    WESTPORT - On Dec. 12, the first through third grade students of South Decatur Elementary School (SDES) put on their annual Christmas concert. Dressed in their best, the young boys and girls of SDES took to the risers to showcase their musical talent

    December 17, 2013