I have twenty-three students in my pre-kindergarten classroom. My classroom is housed in a Title I school in Greenville, South Carolina. One hundred percent of my students receive free or reduced-price meals. Many of my students speak English as a second language.
The students in my classroom have been identified by our school district as being "at-risk" and needing an additional year of educational programming.
It is my goal to make this additional year of programming one that not only provides the necessary academic needs but also provides the social and interpersonal skills found in play.
Our school is located in an impoverished community, where there is extremely limited 'art.' Although students love art class in school, there are very few, if any murals in their neighborhoods. With this in mind, we strive to provide and accommodate students with everything they need and can imagine within our school. I believe, like Secretary Riley, that art education trains our country's youth to become productive, contributing and creative members of society. This dream project began with students developing an essay entitled 'What Role Does Art Play in the World?' Students then shared their compositions and collaboratively brainstormed various murals that they wish we could have in our school building. Next, we introduced the renowned Joe McKinney, who is the most highly sought after muralist in the state of South Carolina. Mr. McKinney has embraced to the vision we have for transforming our school, one paint brush at a time. This grant will allow him to continue working!
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