Teacher Isabel Malone’s dream of creating an art club to foster the talents of her young students finally came to fruition this school year after she applied and was granted a Classroom Impact Grant from the EPISD Education Foundation.
The Powell Art Club meets regularly to allow fourth- and fifth-grade students to grow their talent using materials and tools bought through the grant.
Malone was one of 20 teachers to benefit from the Classroom Impact Grants last year.
“I wanted to be able to provide some motivation as well as a place to unwind and get creative,” Malone said. “I have zero art background and am influenced by my own experiences and ideas of how art can be freeing, experimental, and fun. It relieves stress and tension and takes my mind off things.”
The students used a variety of media to design a silhouette of profile filled with images representing their likes including dogs, cartoon characters and other pop culture icons.
“My hope is that they take something away from their time in the Art Club that will stay with them, inspire them, and possibly pursue and explore more on their own,” Malone said.
Her students collaborated with each other, sharing the mediums and checking out each other’s work – all in tune to the to 1970s and 80s music playing in the background.
“I really enjoy it because I love to draw all the time I never get to show anyone my art, so this a way to show everybody my art,” said Sanjuana Herrera.
Fourth grader Taylor Ross enjoys the extra time to explore her creativity.
“I draw constantly,” she said. “I love drawing. When I go home I draw a lot. The club helps me learn about water colors and different materials you can use for art.”
Peyton Fry, also in fourth grade, likes that the club provides a no judgement zone.
“I like it because I’m able to draw whatever I like without being judged on what I want to draw or how I draw,” she said.
Malone plans to apply again to expand the program next year.
The Classroom Impact Grant application will be open April 5 through June 15. Teachers can apply for up to $1,000 to do an innovative project in their classroom. Grants recipients will be announced in September.
Go to episd.org/educationfoundation beginning April 5 for more information.