Taylor Park Family Resource Coordinator Marie Stott has a love for art. Outside of school, she spends her free time doing photography and creating art at home. Through her work with the students at Taylor Park Elementary, she noticed a need for an after school program. Ms. Stott came up with the idea of starting an after school art club, not only to share her love for art but also to give students an opportunity to be a part of something special and unique.
Extensive research has been done on the effectiveness and impact of after school programs. As the article “The Benefits of Participation in After School Activities” states, “Experts in child advancement suggest that participation in extracurricular activities on a regular basis is the best way to help children develop their individual personality, cut down on emotional stress, and enhance social or academic skills that could benefit them in the future. Psychologists even recommend after school activities as the preferred choice over confidence-building classes.”
Programs like the Taylor Park Art Club:
- Boost Academic Performance
- Improve Life and Social Skills
- Create Safer, Happier Children
- Promote Healthy Hobbies
- Encourage a Brighter Future
I asked a few Taylor Park Art Club students what they had to say about their experience. Tegan C., a 2nd grade student in Ms. Bowers’ class, shared, “I like Art because I like to paint and color.” Hannah M., a 4th grade student in Mrs. Volk’s class, stated, “Art club is an interesting activity because you can stay after school to do Art. You can show your emotions. Staying with Ms. Marie is fun too, and you get to have a snack.” Teighan M., a 4th grader in Mrs. Pleshkewych’s class, added that her mom plans to hang her completed art pieces on the wall in her bedroom. Her favorite Art Club project so far was the button tree (pictured) because “there were so many different buttons to choose from.”
Each quarter, the Taylor Park Art club has an opportunity for new participants. Anywhere from 15-20 Kindergarten through 4th grade students with parental permission can sign up for this after school program. Ms. Stott tries to reach a different group of students each quarter by allowing new participants to sign up for the club first. If there are spots available, she then opens the club up to students who have participated before. Supplies for the program are funded through donations and fundraising. If you would like to donate supplies to the Taylor Park Art Club, please contact Ms. Marie Stott at Taylor Park Elementary at 815-232-0390.
Brian Lamm, Principal
Taylor Park Elementary School
The article referenced, “The Benefits of Participation in After School Activities”, can be accessed in its entirety at the following link: http://www.sparkpe.org/blog/the-benefits-of-participation-in-after-school-activities/.