A visit from Seneca Middle School students to Merrimac Elementary School during the school year showcased a creative connection between art and literacy, with the goal of encouraging young students to explore stories found in books.
Over the course of several months, eighth grade students in Jessica Ramsay’s class brainstormed ways to get younger students excited about reading. The art students decided they would create pottery to accompany a book they liked as a physical representation of a story’s character or something found within the story. Some student-groups took on the challenge of creating their own book, storyboarding ideas, drawing illustrations and writing the stories. As part of the creative process, students studied elements of design and the techniques necessary to create the clay sculptures they envisioned.
“This project was fun because we were able to turn characters from a story into real life using clay,” eighth grade student Arianna Ciregna said. “The first graders get to see us older students create something as part of an interactive activity and see how far you can really take a project.”
As the culminating event to the project, the Seneca students visited all Merrimac first grade classes, where they read their books and passed around the sculptures they created to bring their literature to life.