Watertown arts and STEM students showcase work for families

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WATERTOWN — The halls of H.T. Wiley Intermediate School were filled with wonder Thursday afternoon and Friday morning as families of students participating in summer camps had the opportunity to see what they had been working on for the past few weeks.

A Thursday art showcase featured pieces done in various mediums, and on Friday, it was all about STEM — science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

“Just in the interactions that I’ve had with the children, the excitement, this is summer and they’re so excited about coming to school and sharing their projects,” said Superintendent Patricia B. LaBarr, who is retiring in August. “That, to me, makes it all worth it.”

For the art camp, students in kindergarten through sixth grade participated in a two-week camp session, working on ink and paint projects, self portraits and transparencies melted to make bowls. Sarah L. Carpenter, intern summer school administrator, said 80 to 100 students participated in the art camp, and it was by far the most popular program this summer.

“It’s fun to get students out of the house and doing something where they are able to express themselves through different mediums,” she said. “That they’re able to engage in their learning and having fun while they’re doing this, that’s the most important part.”

Along with the fundamentals of art, students learned about famous artists.

Claire Tross, who will be turning 10 in a few days, said she enjoyed the opportunity to make bowls and mixed-medium bird nests. She said she would definitely do the art camp again.

“I’d do it 50 times,” she said.

Accompanied by her family, including her mother Lindsay and big sister Hannah, Claire pointed out her projects with pride.

“It’s just fun for her to get out in summer and do a lot of activities with her friends,” her mom said, to which Hannah agreed: “I think it’s really cute that the community is coming together to enjoy the kids artwork and just have fun,” she said.

The district will offer other camps for the remainder of the summer with topics focusing on theater, creative writing, ecology and math.

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