Spare Parts Helps Students Get Their Art On At Harlandale ISD STREAM Summer Program

Spare Parts was thrilled to participate in Harlandale ISD’s STREAM program during June and July this summer. Seven Spare Parts instructors hosted art programs at four campuses, all with a focus on reuse in art education. Omar Leos, the Fine Arts Coordinator for HISD says that the main goal of the program, “…is to have enrichment activities that focus on STREAM (Science, Technology, Robotics, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics). The benefits are numerous, but we want students to get excited about learning and take what they learn in the summer and apply it during the regular school year. We want them to know that all these subjects are related and tied to one another.”

The summer program originally began as a two-week Robotics camp in 2014. Harlandale ISD STEM & GT Coordinator, Anthony Khosravi, describes how the next summer they went on to establish a STEM Pipeline provided STEM-related instruction and after-school opportunities for all students interested in a STEM career or degree. Recognizing the need for a more well-rounded program, the STEM/GT department offered their first STREAM camp at Morrill Elementary School in 2015. “A little over 250 elementary students were part of the first STREAM camp,” says Khosravi. “The second STREAM summer camp was at Stonewall Elementary School, and Leal Middle School, as we began working with middle school students, and our program steadily grew to over 350 students the second year in 2016.”

This summer, the STREAM summer program expanded to six elementary schools, one middle school campus and the STEM Early College High School campus. Nearly 600 students attended the STREAM program, with 100 staff members supporting as teachers, assistants and clerical staff.

“This summer’s expansion was made possible through a district grant which was awarded to eight campuses within the district,” says Khosravi. The TEXAS ACE grant, administered by the Texas Education Agency and funded through the 21st Century Community Learning Centers initiative of the U.S. Department of Education, was awarded to these campuses participating in the program.

The overarching goal of the Texas ACE program is to foster each student’s academic success by improving attendance, behavior and academics which lead to grade level promotion, graduation and helping students be more prepared for college and the workplace. The grant was specifically intended to help provide enrichment during non-school hours, which is imperative during the three-month hiatus from academics during the summer. While the summer program ended in July, Texas ACE will continue to provide after-school education designed to enrich student academic success on each campus.

Omar Leos oversaw the fine arts enrichment activities at all campuses, including arts workshops hosted by Spare Parts instructors. 

Some of the highlights of the program included karate, yoga, ballet, visual art, coding, robotics, xylophone and ukulele lessons. At one campus, students even worked on a musical rendition called, “Disney’s The Lion King Kids.”

To prepare for their visual arts workshops, Spare Parts instructors made a trip up to the Austin Creative Reuse Center, bringing back a van full of preloved supplies to share with the students. The instructors hit the ground rolling with students that same week.

At Adams elementary instructors Amy Jones, Amy Johnson, Gabriela Santiago and Kara Michele Salinas led students in creating an Art-A-Zon with a recycled cardboard jungle, ocean diorama binders, giant creatures, and cardboard robots.

Daniel Flores helped students at Terrell Wells Middle School create moving art with dry erase markers, 3D sculptures and bubble blowers, leftover coffee paint, floating chalk prints, fingerprint portraits, and pop art sculptures.

Junye Butler led students in creating mini box sculptures, owl paintings, yarn string balls, art inspired by music, salt dough sculptures and more at Stonewall/Flanders Elementary.

At Collier Elementary, students created a number of projects including bird mobiles, cork sailboats, recycled sea creatures, space collages, and much, much more with Dezarre Boone.

Kara Salinas, who taught in July at Adams elementary, created her lessons and project ideas in May and June. “But [I] followed closely the progress of all the schools [as the other instructors taught]. I really did not want to revisit a technique or project by accident when it was my turn to teach. I used cardboard as did the other teachers. I wanted to focus teaching the process to change the cardboard, and create items that were not immediately recognized as cardboard, Salinas said. “Teaching for the STREAM program really forced me to create lessons that were part of a bigger concept like structure, vocabulary, or modeling the color spectrum. This program was not a summer of craft making. I am thoroughly impressed by the knowledge of the participating students, and their willingness to work together. I learned a lot from the students participating in STREAM. I will never forget this experience.”

Throughout the camp, Spare Parts made it a point to emphasize the importance of reuse to the students. And although it took some habit breaking leading kids away from the garbage bin, it was inspiring to see how the students ran with the ideas given to them.

10 Ways to Reuse Clothes

I always say that my favorite craft store is the thrift store, and my favorite supply is clothing. You won’t find such colorful material to work with at a better–or greener–price. Here are 10 ways to reuse old clothes.
thrifted-sweater-blanket1. Patchwork Sweater Blanket

Turn a collection of patterned sweaters into a cozy throw.

theredthread_NeonCoilBowls_main22. Neon Fabric Coil Bowl

Use t-shirt yarn to make your own storage.

tshirt-yarn-weaving3. T-Shirt Yarn Weaving

Or hanging wall art.

recycled-jeans-planter4. Recycled Jeans Planter

Use a pair of old jeans to make these clever planters.

workoutbag2125. T-Shirt Workout Bag

Turn a t-shirt into the perfect carry-all.

rag-rug-title6. Braided T-Shirt Rug

Or use a pile of shirts to make a rug.

make-a-camera-strap-from-a-scarf-intro7. Scarf Camera Strap

Snap photos in style with a one-of-kind camera strap.

cardigan-lampshade8. Cardigan Lampshade

Update an old lamp with a simple cardigan.

plaid-backpack9. Restyled Plaid Backpack

Turn a men’s plaid shirt into a backpack.

slasher-scarf10. Slasher Scarf

Make a fringed scarf from an old shirt.

I hope you’re inspired to reuse those old clothes and will think twice before tossing them out. For more creative reuse ideas visit me at MakerMama.com.

 

Top 10 Ways to Reuse Your Stuff this Earth Day

Hiya, this is Amy from Maker Mama. Earth Day is here, and today I’m sharing my favorite ideas for reducing waste and getting your make on. Here are my Top 10 Ways to to Reuse Your Stuff this Earth Day:

Manipulate a cardboard box into a unique wall lamp with this fun video tutorial.

Use the rest of your box for some upcycled wall clocks by Pysselbolaget.

Save old duct tape rolls to make embroidered bangles.

  Turn your brown bag stash into a set of notebooks in just five minutes.

Plastic liter bottles make for super cute kitty planters.

 Dress up large tin cans and boxes in to upcycled utensil holders for the kitchen (or your desk).

Give those holey jeans new life as a knitted throw pillow.

Ditch the plastic and make your own produce bags using colorful T-shirts instead.

Or make a crocheted T-shirt rug.

And my favorite creative reuse idea? Turn any plastic bags you do have into plarn–perfect for any knit, crochet, or weaving project you can dream up!

Thanks for having me Mary, and I hope you’re all inspired to get creative this Earth Day!