What an April! Rebekah Raye in Washington County, Part 1

2016-04-12 21.50.03

As part of IRW’s community-wide program, “Alewives: Small Fish, Big Impact,” Maine artist Rebekah Raye (following up on Kim Ridley’s author visit) presented on the art of Swimming Home and The Secret Bay to students at Beatrice Rafferty Elementary School, and led art workshops with each grade.

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Students learned how to bring words to life through images, and how to illustrate animals found in estuaries using such tools as graphite crayons, smudgers, and kneaded erasers.

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Deb LaRochelle, a member of the faculty and our site coordinator at Beatrice Rafferty Elementary School, said: It is very enriching, what you do for these Maine children.  I think you can see their appreciation in their enthusiasm and participation.  Thank you for these special days and experiences.

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Only two days after students at Beal’s Elementary School met with The Secret Bay author Kim Ridley, they met its illustrator Rebekah Raye!

Rebekah gave an all-school presentation and workshop on illustrating animals, and then met with each class to guide them on their own art projects.

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They also participated in a Gallery Walk, where everyone had the opportunity to view each other’s projects, make comments about what they noticed, and share their experiences together!

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Principal Chris Crowley: IRW author/illustrator visits are surely highlights in our school year.

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The next day, Jonesport Elementary students worked alongside Rebekah creating their own art inspired from nature.

Rebekah’s joyfulness and artistry inspired many students, and together they created both art and memories!

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Rebekah signed copies of The Secret Bay (given to students during Kim Ridley’s visit) and Swimming Home. Every student (at all three schools) received at least one book as part of the program.

IRW loves to see their looks of concentration while they learn and create, and their smiles when they receive a book to call their own!

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A Jonesport second grader asked, “What will be our future if we don’t take care of estuaries?”

A fifth grader said, “I really enjoy the authors you send here! Keep up the good work! I can’t wait until I can tell my grandkids about all the people I met growing up as a kid!”

When it comes to feedback, it doesn’t get any better than that!

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