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Center School Sculpture Project: Making Connections Through Art





   The front of Center School is now adorned with a new sculpture! Our goal for this project was to create connections and lasting memories through art. We wanted to produce a sculpture that would incorporate our entire school community (students, teachers, and parents) and form a partnership with our sister district, Consolidated High School District 230.

To start the project, first and second grade students were asked to design a fish. One winner was chosen from each grade. Everlyn Zerfass and Haley Borgman’s fish drawings were selected. “I was so happy to find out my fish drawing was chosen,” said Second Grade Artist, Haley Borgman.

A collaboration was formed with Carl Sandburg’s Applied Tech Teacher, William Vasich. Using wood Mr. Vasich donated, his Woods 2 and Building Construction classes designed a template from the girls’ drawings, and then cut and sanded twenty fish. Center School is very thankful for their contribution and this project would not have been as successful without their participation.

A few months later, the wood fish were returned to Center School for painting. Each class voted on what techniques, colors, and elements of art to incorporate. Students worked together to make final decisions. They were eager to start painting and in the end, each fish expressed the artists’ imaginations and their creativity. Teachers and parents participated in the painting process as well.  Everyone to had an opportunity to express themselves and be apart of this artistic adventure.

Finally, Rick Hansen, Assistant Director of Facilities, Operations, and Maintenance at Orland School District 135, kindly donated materials to make the sculpture a permanent fixture at Center School. He also set aside time for students to watch and ask questions about the installation. Mr. Hansen wanted students to experience and comprehend the construction aspect behind installing a sculpture.  

Center’s PFE charitably donated money for paint and brushes. They fully supported this sculpture endeavor and the importance of community. Center School Principal Jennifer Nichols commented, "Ms. Heuser has done a wonderful job collaborating with many stakeholders to make this sculpture a success.  The students are very excited to see their artwork turned into a sculpture that will welcome Center families for years to come." 

Students Fish Sculpture Parents Sandburg Staff