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elementary education

4th Grade Exercises Their Right to Assemble

4th Grade Exercises Their Right to Assemble

This fall 4th-grade students were immersed in the study of the constitution, The Bill of Rights and more specifically the 1st Amendment. Tonya Clanton, 4th-grade language arts and social studies teacher, led her students in an examination of the peaceful protests of the Little Rock 9, the Greensboro 4k, and the Montgomery Bus Boycott, learning how non-violence, determination, and endurance can lead to positive change over time. 

Students drawing a poster

Fourth grade also studied the history of Earth Day through climate science, current events, and writings by environmental activist Rachel Carson.  Fourth graders were also introduced to the efforts of youth activist Greta Thurnberg. And how one person can make a positive change. 

4th graders then created a plan to demonstrate to ArtSpace the right of Americans to assemble and speak to the cause of protecting the Earth. Students made posters in small groups for the big day. Ms. Tonya guided them to work with a limited color palette and simple eye-catching phrases for a more powerful impact. Students also choreographed a dance routine that spoke to the cause as well.

On September 20th, the 4th graders performed a “flash mob” on the field.  They created a chant with hand motions to act out the freedom of speech, religion, the press, the right to petition, and the right to assemble.  Their efforts were featured on WLOS’ Never Stop Learning on September 23rd. You can watch the story here.

Gratitude- November’s Supply for the Art of life

Gratitude- November’s Supply for the Art of life

By Erin Carr – Communications coordinator and former classroom teacher at ArtSpace Charter School, educating over 400 3rd and 4th graders in her 12 years in the classroom.

Each month at ArtSpace a character trait or “supply for the art of life” is highlighted. Any member of the community can be nominated or nominate someone for demonstrating this trait.  These nominees are announced during our morning announcements.  In the month of November, the focus is on “Gratitude.”

Interactive bulletin board for gratitude

Interactive bulletin board for gratitude

Gratitude defined by Google’s dictionary is “the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.” Hopefully most of us were taught as children to say “please” and “thank you”, I know I was.  I know as a third and fourth grade teacher it was something I constantly reminded my students to do.  Reminding them specifically it was the polite thing to do but also that acknowledging service is important.  However, I believe there is a  “higher’ level to gratitude than the platitudes of “please” and “thank you”. As a teacher I wanted my students to understand that a deep sense of gratitude can make many things in life easier. It took reaching early adulthood for me to realize it could save me from the “glass half empty syndrome” that I was prone to. To stop and be gracious for even a tiny thing in life can quickly pull you away from feelings of anger, frustration and negativity.  It is an act of intentionality that leaves little room for those feelings.

Ms. Adina ArtSpace’s guidance counselor has put a cornucopia on the “life supply” bulletin board this month.  It is an interactive board that invites individuals to write on a piece of fruit what they are thankful for.  As the month progresses the bulletin board will fill to the brim with the fruit “spilling” out of the cornucopia.  Clearly the ArtSpace community has a lot to be thankful for.  The hope is as November passes the community holds on to this supply and leans on it when they need to.

The gratitude of ArtSpace community members

The gratitude of ArtSpace community members