Students helping students
By BOB COUPLAND
HUBBARD – Hubbard High School art students spent time doing holiday art projects with students with developmental disabilities at Fairhaven School in Niles as part of a community outreach effort.
High school art teacher Joshua MacMillan, along with 10 students from the National Arts Honor Society, came out to do the all-day workshop with about two dozen preschoolers at the Fairhaven School.
Fairhaven works with children and adults up to 22 years old, but the workshop focused on children ranging from 3 to 5 years old.
This is the first time the Hubbard students have come to the school for an art project.
MacMillan said the students have discussed a community-based project and after different ideas, wanted to involve special needs students.
“When that project was mentioned, I knew about Fairhaven School. I called them about it and they were very receptive so I knew I had a venue,” MacMillan said.
MacMillan said many of the students enjoy art and working with children.
Hubbard senior Nadyne Howe said she wasn’t sure about the project at first, but said she is glad she was part of it.
”It seemed to be fun,” she said.
Bryn Kelver, a junior, said she had a lot of fun as did the children and noted they were smiling and showing their completed artwork.
Kayla Nail, a senior, said said she liked the students’ creativity and how well they worked together.
“I liked the kids being so excited and getting involved with what they were doing,” Nail said.
Senior Destiny Rounds said the students were excited and wanted to show their friends what work they had done.
”They were holding up their wreaths and decorations,” she said.
Fairhaven has an integrated preschool that services children with and without disabilities. School officials said the program gives both groups exposure to different personalities.
Early Intervention Director Lisa Cassasa said the event allowed the preschoolers to see older students as role models and to have activities for different age groups.
“It is a great program to have the high-schoolers come and work with our children. The high-schoolers enjoyed this as much as the preschoolers,” she said.
Cassasa said the effort gives children exposure to something they can see and touch as well as be a part of creating. The children also learned about colors and creating a project.
The completed wreaths are being displayed for the holidays at Fairhaven.
MacMillan said a special wreath with handprints of all the participants was also done and taken back to Hubbard.
Hubbard High School plans to conduct the workshop again next spring and possibly make it a continuing project for students.