Children's Art Olympiad Contest
It was the morning immediately following the Art Awards Assembly. Eleven contests had been entered, announcements of winners made, and the certificates handed out on the Hodges stage. Then a phone call came into the art room from Washington, D.C. "There's one more important event that happens only once every four years, and we want some California students to enter," invited the pleasant voice from Washington, D.C.
"Oh, my students are just about out of school for the year. And we're tired," replied Mrs. Cheney.
"No, we're not!" exclaimed a group of kids who happened to be working on various projects at recess."We love entering contests. Tell us what it is!" they begged.
"It's a huge task with a very tight deadline," said Mrs. Cheney, looking like she needed a good long nap.
"We love it!" yelled the art bunch, and started whipping out sketches that very minute.
Mrs. Cheney was right. The paintings had to be very large (18x24), incorporate the theme "art and sports," arrive by the last day of judging AND winners have to agree to go to Washington, D.C. for the festival the week before the 4th of July.
This is the Art Olympiad. It happens every four years to celebrate the importance of creativity in the lives of 8-12-year-old children -- and the tendency to eliminate arts programs at the elementary school level at this crucial developmental stage (which would never happen at BHS, not in a hundred years!).
Sponsored by the Child Art Foundation, this non-profit group is behind the movement STEM to STEAM (don't leave out the A for arts in the push for science-technology-engineering-math programs in school). Students from around the world are invited to submit their artworks and attend the festival. This will take place on the Ellipse (the President's Park) in front of the White House June 30 - July 3.
We had six students actually meet that tight deadline. They sketched, drew, and painted every recess for three weeks. Even though they were competing against each other, they were also very supportive of each idea and effort. Other classmates were rooting for them to finish.
Maybe BHS will produce a winner. But if one goes, others may, too! We could have a BHS contingent in the nation's capital! We would put on art workshops for other kids. Go, go Bobcats!
Watch this space for the exciting finish to this art race!
BHS artistic/sports entrants:
Kaelan B., 4th grade
Sophia D., 5th grade
Julia I., 5th grade
Emily L., 5th grade
Nadia M., 5th grade
Ashtyn W., 5th grade