Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Say goodbye to Miller Elementary...

This morning I was a guest speaker for Aliki's Medieval Days...a book about life in times of knights and royal ladies at Miller Elementary. I was asked to talked about how I hand dye my fabrics for my narrative quilts. We shared what a natural fabric is like flax, linen, silks and cottons and how they can take the dyes permanently for all sorts of clothing, wall hangings and decorative home furnishes. I had four groups of about 22 students each and we shared vocabulary that they had on their vocabulary lists in the classroom: solutions, conservations, evaporation and suspension and how I defined them to make my permanent colors. They loved touching the hand quilting, beads, buttons and the stories that helped me to create my images. The two hours flew by and I think the children loved having this special day of activities. Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources were there for bow and arrow exercises, other weavers and spinners demonstrate their crafts and a young farmer from Utica brought two sweet three month old lambs and gave us a 20 minute demonstration of shearing the sheep. The gym was filled with delighted children who squealed when the lambs started bleating to one another. Sheep are herd mammals and do not enjoy being separated so this demonstration of despair was amusing. Bakers were there baking homemade breads, cross stitch artists and embroidery guilds shared small projects that some students could take with them. I left with an invitation to come again in the near future. The book's author will be there to say goodbye to Miller and share her life as an artist in publication. I am planning on going back to meet her for one of her presentations. I love her illustrations and colors she has developed over the years.
Tonight We were invited by the Drama club at Cherry Valley elementary for a pot luck dinner and their play concerning bullying and how to combat the ill effects of this disastrous trends. Maya had a couple solos and worked her magic in Grandma's heart. This wonderful teacher Mrs. Beaver has worked miracles with these young aspiring actors. As the year has progressed all of the students appear so much more confident after a year of adventures on stage. Eating the dinner with the other families only amplified the feeling of community in this grade school program. I am so thrilled to know the levy passed even if by a slim margin ...our children all deserve the best our teachers can offer. Maya Rose we are so proud of how far you have come! Imagine and Live in Peace, Mary Helen Fernandez Stewart

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