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Newfoundland schools awarded ArtsSmarts grants

Eastern Owl, a First Nations women’s drum group based in St John’s, performed for students and faculty at St. Mary’s Elementary Thursday morning as part of the ArtsSmarts program that announced grants for a variety of programs across the province and the 2017 Statoil ArtsSmart Scholarship winner. Heidi Dixon (left) of the St. John’s Native Friendship Centre joined Eastern Owl members (from left) Rebecca Sharr, Stacey Howse and Danielle Benoit for several performances.
Eastern Owl, a First Nations women’s drum group based in St John’s, performed for students and faculty at St. Mary’s Elementary Thursday morning as part of the ArtsSmarts program that announced grants for a variety of programs across the province and the 2017 Statoil ArtsSmart Scholarship winner. Heidi Dixon (left) of the St. John’s Native Friendship Centre joined Eastern Owl members (from left) Rebecca Sharr, Stacey Howse and Danielle Benoit for several performances.

Providing students with the vehicle to explore their artistic side is what ArtsSmarts has been doing in Newfoundland and Labrador for the past two decades.

This collective of groups that include corporate sponsor Statoil Canada, the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development’s Cultural Connections Strategy and the Newfoundland and Labrador Teachers Association (NLTA) has helped the program continue its high level of success.

The ArtsSmarts program awarded $142,500 for 30 projects taking place in schools across Newfoundland and Labrador at a ceremony held at St. Mary’s Elementary in St. John’s Thursday.

Some of the projects funded this year include Storytelling in the Valley, taking place at St. Mary’s Elementary, where all 180 students in kindergarten to Grade 6 and their 15 teachers will work with storytellers from the St. John’s Storytelling Festival to explore the art of storytelling.

“You will get to publish a book, produce a play or perform a dance through this project,” said Mark Browne, MHA for Placentia West-Bellevue and parliamentary secretary to the minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation.

“I look forward to seeing your finished products.”

The students will also work with visual artists Catherine Wright, Gina Rae King and Susan Parsons to create visual art pieces that express their stories in images.

The project will support language arts, science and social studies, and, depending on the grade level, the visual art pieces will be drawings, paintings, collages, painted silk or quilted squares.

 

Rebecca Sharr of Eastern Owl leads students of St. Mary’s Elementary through the snake dance as part of the ArtsSmarts program that announced grants for a variety of programs across the province and the 2017 Statoil ArtsSmart Scholarship winner.

Mentoring is key

“I want to thank all the music teachers and the mentors for making a huge difference in the lives of a lot of people,” said Gwenyth Puddester, the 2017 Statoil ArtsSmart Scholarship winner.

“The kindness, tolerance and dedication of these people does not go unnoticed,” she told the students who attended the assembly.

The students were treated to a performance by Eastern Owl, a First Nations women’s drum group based in St John’s. As part of its performance, Eastern Owl led the students through a snake dance.

Schools apply to ArtsSmarts for funding to bring professional artists into the classroom to help teachers and students integrate arts activities into non‐arts subject areas.

The funded projects this year will see 2,633 students and 170 teachers working with different artists, creating 61 professional artist positions encompassing 14 schools throughout the city of St. John’s and 16 additional schools in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Paul Fulton, president of Statoil Canada, said being involved in the program was a privilege for his company.

“I have three children who are artistic kids. But they were born to sciency parents,” he said.

“They would benefit from this program.”

Fulton told the students they are the heroes of tomorrow and they will be an inspiration to their friends, parents and others.

 

Schools named for ArtsSmart funding

 

The following is a list of the 30 schools in Newfoundland and Labrador who were awarded funding under the ArtsSmart programs taking place in schools across the province for the 2017‐18 school year.

The announcement was made at St. Mary’s Elementary on Thursday morning and included students performing a song they learned in a past ArtsSmarts project with accompaniment from three members of Eastern Owl (Stacey Howse, Rebecca Sharr, Danielle Benoit) along with Heidi Dixon from the St. John’s Native Friendship Centre.

The program awarded $142,500 for this year to foster 30 projects; 14 of those in the St. John’s area and the other 16 dispersed throughout the rest of Newfoundland and Labrador schools.

The following is a list of those schools and projects they support:

 

St. John’s – Metro

Beachy Cove Elementary

Portugal Cove‐St. Philip’s

$5,500

What a Wonder Full World!

Using a variety of media, 566 students in kindergarten to grade 4, and their 27 teachers, will work with artists to explore their sense of wonder about the world, and their place in it. Kindergarten students will connect with their science studies by collecting, arranging, and photographing natural objects with artist Marlene Creates. The photographs will be compiled into a book and students will verbally present on their images. In Grade 1, students will explore penguin habitats in science through a painted silk banner with artist Catherine Wright. Grade 2 students will work with Linda Doody to create watercolours of

poinsettias as part of their exploration of celebrations throughout the world in social studies. Grade 3 students will explore mental health through silk painting with Catherine Wright. In Grade 4, students will learn and create their own pourquoi tales (fables that use fictional stories to explain the natural world) in language arts. Catherine Wright will work with students to transfer illustrations from their pourquoi tales onto silk banners. All student created works will be featured in and ArtsSmarts exhibition at the end of the school year.

 

Bishop Feild Elementary

St. John’s

$5,350

Let’s Make a Show!

As part of their French and English language arts and social studies classes, 50 Grade 4 students and their three teachers will work together with dance‐storytelling artist Louise Moyes, musician Diana Daly, and puppeteer‐musician Mary Barry to explore the stories of their family and community, and to use them to create their own performance through music, storytelling, puppetry, and dance.

 

Holy Trinity Elementary School

Torbay

$5,330

Connecting with our Environment

Kindergarten and grade 4 classes totalling 230 students and 11 teachers will work with artists to explore the theme Connecting With Our Environment. Artists Isabella St. John and Erin Callahan will lead them in the creation of ceramic tiles inspired by the local Torbay environment. Kindergarten students will explore making healthy food choices, as well as how food is made, as part of their science and health studies. This will culminate with each student creating a tile with relief sculptures of locally grown foods. Grade 4 students will explore local landscapes and ecosystems through their science studies. Students will draw and paint images of the local landscape, before finally transferring these images to a clay tile to be painted and fired.

 

Elizabeth Park Elementary

Paradise

$5,500

We are Unique! A Celebration of Culture!

Eleven teachers and their 237 students in Grades 4 to 6 will work with visual artists Wendy Shirran, Veselina Tomova and Jillian Moores to explore and celebrate aspects of Newfoundland and Labrador culture as part of their social studies classes. Grade 4 students will explore flags from Newfoundland and Labrador’s present and past, before designing and creating their own flags representing their individual identities. Grade 5 students will explore the work of well-known Newfoundland and Labrador artists, and will then paint motifs in the style of those artists, as well as in their own style. Grade 6 students will create a narrative relief ceramic tile mural based on Newfoundland and Labrador folk stories.

 

Gonzaga High School

St. John’s

$1,810

Mentoring & Music … Where melodies come to life

Students of the Applied Music high school course and their teacher will work with songwriter Ray Lake to create their own songs before recording, producing, and mixing them in a studio setting to create a CD of original works by the 25 students. The CD will be launched at an event for the school community.

 

Goulds Elementary

Goulds

$5,450

Explorers

Through this project, 100 Grade 4 students and their four teachers will learn what makes people want to explore, and how that helps us learn about our world. As part of their social studies, students will research various Newfoundland and Labrador and Canadian explorers of place, people, and ideas. Under the guidance of theatre artist Chris Driedzic, students will create monologues speaking from the point of view of an explorer they have researched. The monologues will be performed for the class with costumes and lighting, while fellow students film them to create a video collage. With visual artist Michael Connolly, students will explore the linocut printmaking process, and will create images and symbols that express the spirit of an explorer they have studied.

 

Holy Heart of Mary High School

St. John’s

$5,500

The Abuse of Greatness/ Framed Holy Heart

A close study of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar will be combined with character exploration and performance with director Danielle Irvine for 30 language arts students who will explore the use and effects of language in the rise and fall of those in power. In Theatre 3220, 22 students will work with mentors Jenina MacGillivray and Victoria Wells of the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival to write, shoot, and edit a short documentary exploring the school’s unique position as an incubator for emerging artistic talent.

 

Lakecrest Independent School

St. John’s

$5,500

Lakecrest’s Botanical Dream: A Midsummer Night’s Dream Shakespeare Bath in Nature!

Actor Paul Wilson and director Danielle Irvine will lead 30 students in Grades 8 and 9, and their two teachers, in an exploration of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Beginning with developing a deep understanding of the original text, students will then explore the world of dreams by getting into nature itself and developing scenes from the play, with a performance to the school community.

 

Macdonald Drive Elementary School

St. John’s

$2,770

The Peace Project

Multidisciplinary artist Catherine Wright will work with 64 kindergarten students and their four teachers to explore concepts of peace from a personal and world perspective. Over six sessions with each class, students will create images of peace in paint and drawing that express what it means to them, and what they think it means in the world. Concepts will include peace in family, natural celebrations and symbols of peace from around the world, and promoting acceptance. Students will then create a collaborative

Peace Fence, using their artwork, in the kindergarten play area of the school’s outdoor playground. The project will link to curricular outcomes in health, social studies, and religion.

 

Prince of Wales Collegiate

St. John’s

$5,500

War & Remembrance — Then & Now — An RSVP Project

Actor Paul Wilson will work with 20 Grade 11 and 12 students and two teachers to create an original piece of collective theatre using the collaborative creative process known as RSVP. Students will use research and improvisational techniques to create and perform their own play that explores issues of war and remembrance.

 

Rennie’s River Elementary

St. John’s

$5,373

Bringing Art to Life in the Classroom

Six teachers and their 134 Grades 3, 5 and 6 students will work with artists Jill Moores, Ray Lake, and Winnie Glavine to use various art forms that connect with topics in the school curriculum. Grade 3 students will explore plant life near the Rennie’s River ecosystem through photography and watercolours as part of their social studies and science classes. Grade 5 students will incorporate songwriting into their language arts, social studies, and religious studies. Grade 6 students will create traditional hooked rugs as part of their social studies classes.

 

St. Bonaventure’s College

St. John’s

$2,993

Stranger Music — Music and Exploring Identity

As part of their language arts studies, 25 grade 11 students and their teacher will work with songwriter Mark Bragg to explore how different music genres present the complex idea of strangeness, whether in terms of being a stranger, or experiences that challenge or open up our perspective of the world.

 

St. Francis of Assisi School

Outer Cove

$4,044

Tales of the Sea: Breathing Life into Newfoundland and Labrador Children’s Literature

As part of their language arts studies, theatre artist Rory Lambert will work with 41 students in Grade 6 and their two teachers to explore classic Newfoundland and Labrador children’s stories that will be used as inspiration to create a play. Students will explore writing for the stage, performance techniques, and creative staging to guide them towards a completed performance piece that will be presented to the school community.

 

St. Mary’s Elementary School

St. John’s

$5,500

Storytelling in the Valley

As part of their language arts, science, and social studies classes all 180 students in kindergarten to Grade 6 and their 15 teachers will work with storytellers from the St. John’s Storytelling Festival to explore the art of storytelling. They will also work with visual artists Catherine Wright, Gina Rae King, and Susan Parsons to create visual art pieces that express their stories in images. Kindergarten students will explore self-expression in drawing, painting, and collage. Grade 1 students will create a group work

of textures in nature. Grade 2 students will create individual and group works in painted silk. Grade 3 students will create patterns and images in quilted squares that relate to their stories. Grade 4 students will create illustrations of key objects in their stories. Grade 5 students will create textile pieces based on Arthurian legends, and in Grade 6 students will create illustrations based on learned recitations.

 

Avalon

Amalgamated Academy

Bay Roberts

$5,500

West Side Shakespeare: A Romeo and Juliet Shakespeare Bath; with a musical twist!

Two teachers and their 25 Grade 9 students will participate in a complete immersion into Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet with actor Paul Wilson and director Danielle Irvine. After an in‐depth analysis of Shakespeare’s original text to ensure students understand the language and story of the scenes, students will rewrite scenes in their own contemporary language, write chorus parts to connect scenes, and learn songs from the Romeo and Juliet‐based musical, West Side Story. All elements will be brought together in a production of the students’ finished script including a musical performance.

 

Carbonear Academy

Carbonear

$4,480

Celebrating and Sharing Newfoundland and Labrador Culture

Visual artists Michelle Rowe and Tammy Wrice will work with 55 Grade 3 students and their two teachers to integrate a variety of arts and cultural activities into the social studies curriculum. Specific projects include papier‐mâché representations of dried salt cod, drawings of traditional knitting patterns, paintings created from objects in nature, making prints that depict traditional life in Newfoundland and Labrador, and using found objects to create a traditional ugly stick.

 

Dunne Memorial Academy

St. Mary’s

$4,115

Celebrating Our Culture

Under the guidance of musicians and traditional arts ambassadors Jim Payne and Fergus O’Byrne 70 students in kindergarten to Grade 10 and their five teachers will explore activities that integrate the social studies, music, and language arts studies with storytelling, songwriting, and traditional dancing.

 

Holy Family Elementary

Chapel Arm

$4,052

A Celebration of Newfoundland and Labrador ‐ A Cultural Experience

Under the guidance of musicians and traditional arts ambassadors Jim Payne and Fergus O’Byrne; 92 students in kindergarten to Grade 6 and their eight teachers will explore activities that integrate the social studies, music, and language arts studies with storytelling, songwriting, and traditional dancing.

 

St. Edward’s School

Kelligrews

$4,110

Four Seasons

Multidisciplinary artists Catherine Wright and musician Len Sperry will work with 65 kindergarten students and their four teachers in an expressive exploration of the four seasons. Students will explore each season with a variety of art forms including creative movement, traditional dance, printmaking, collage, and silk painting. The final sessions of the project will have students creating a collaborative silk painted banner showing what they learned about the seasons that will hang in the school permanently.

 

St. Francis School

Harbour Grace

$5,500

Shakespeare for Today: A Shakespeare Bath for Early Teens

Actor Paul Wilson and director Danielle Irvine will lead students in a full immersion into Shakespeare’s language through various scenes and monologues selected for their relevancy to today’s young teens.

The project will involve 20 Grade 8 students who will rewrite Shakespeare into modern language, learning performance techniques, and stage combat. The project will culminate in a performance of the classic and modern texts to the school community.

 

Stella Maris Academy

Trepassey

$5,500

Let’s Make A Show!

As part of their social studies and language arts courses, 20 students in kindergarten to Grade 9 and their five teachers will work with artists Louise Moyes and Diana Daly to explore their local stories and culture. Students will collect stories about their community from family, and from their own recollections. These will be developed into performance pieces with songs, dance and spoken word, and be presented to the community in a performance.

 

Tricon Elementary

Bay de Verde

$4,842

A Cultural Experience with Fergus O’Byrne and Jim Payne

Under the guidance of musicians and traditional arts ambassadors Jim Payne and Fergus O’Byrne 100 students in kindergarten to Grade 6 and their 10 teachers will explore activities that integrate the student’s social studies, music, and language arts studies with storytelling, songwriting and traditional dancing.

 

Eastern

Random Island Academy

Hickman’s Harbour

$5,485

Plays, Playwrights & Performance; Scenes from the Newfoundland Labrador Canon

As part of their English language arts and drama courses, 55 junior and senior high school students and their teacher will work with theatre artist Rory Lambert in a unique exploration of the Newfoundland and Labrador theatre canon. Students will read and discuss specific scenes from the selected plays, and with Rory’s guidance, develop performances of the selected scenes with limited staging and lighting to accentuate the language of the scene. The project will culminate in a performance for the school and

local community.

 

Central

Sandstone Elementary

Ladle Cove

$5,027

Wind of Over Tickle — Examining the Cod Moratorium Through Drama, Songs, and Images

Under the guidance of artists Eric West, Greg Blumer, and Michelle Dove, 21 primary and elementary students and their two teachers will adapt the storybook/CD “Wind Over Dark Tickle” into a musical play which they will perform for their community. Through the process students will also examine the impact of the cod moratorium on their community and document the changes it has made with a photographic slide presentation. This project will link to the social studies and science curricula.

 

Se’t Anneway Kegnomogwom All Grade

Conne River

$5,500

FRAMED: Se’t Anneway Kagnamogwom

Over the course of five days, 18 students in Grade 10 and their teacher will work with film mentor Latonia Hartery, editing mentor Victoria Wells, and a producer from the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival to create a short documentary film exploring life for youth living on the only recognized First Nations Reserve in Newfoundland.

 

Valmont Academy

King’s Point

$5,498

Storytelling: The Page and the Stage

Theatre artists Rory Lambert will lead 80 students in kindergarten to Grade 12 and their six teachers through theatre infused exploration of Newfoundland and Labrador’s written culture. Kindergarten to Grade 6 students will explore classic Newfoundland children’s books that the students will interpret for the stage before performing them for the school and the community. Grades 7 to 12 students will explore the playwriting process with Lambert as part of their English language arts and Newfoundland and Labrador studies classes. Students will create original short scripts that express their own ideas about their province and their community.

 

Western

Sacred Heart Elementary

Corner Brook

$1,808

How Do We Really See?

Teachers and their 36 Grade 6 students will work with visual artist Jane Reagh to explore the impressionist art movement as part of their French language arts and social studies courses. Students will research and explore the ideas of impressionist painters, and how they actually painted. They will then create a still life painting in the impressionist style. Students will also create post‐impressionist self-portraits to show the development of art through history.

 

Labrador

Eric G. Lambert School

Churchill Falls

$3,963

Indigenous Art Integration

As part of their language arts and social studies classes, indigenous artist Jordan Bennett will work with 90 students in grades 4 to 12 students and their 15 teachers to explore concepts of contemporary culture, political issues, traditional indigenous art, and popular culture to create unique artwork that explores personal identity through traditional art forms.

 

J. C. Erhardt Memorial

Makkovik

$5,500

Makkovik Circus Club

As part of their physical education classes, and to support school goals of encouraging physical activity and supporting self‐confidence in students, 74 students in kindergarten to Grade 12 will work with circus/theatre artists Beni Malone and Ruth Lawrence to explore circus skills and clown theatre techniques through a weeklong series of exercises and workshops. The project will engage students in a unique personally expressive activity with an ultimate goal to develop a circus skills club in the school.

 

Northern Lights Academy

Rigolet

$5,500

Northern Light Circus Project

All 62 students in this kindergarten to Grade 12 school and its seven teachers will explore the traditional Inuit stories of the northern lights with elders in the community. Then they will work with circus theatre artists Beni Malone and Ruth Lawrence to create circus and clown theatre style scenes based on the traditional stories. The project will culminate in a performance of the scenes the students have created for the local community.

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