First-graders at Wallace School of Integrated Arts Thursday threw their hands to the left and then threw them to the right as they sang a canción that taught them to count to 15 in Spanish.
“Put your manos in el aire,” the teacher said.
One little boy asked her what that meant. Put your hands in the air, she responded.
She turned on the music, and her children sang and danced. Every now and then a child squealed in delight.
Another first-grade class worked with kindergartners to create a Halloween dictionary. They wrote out Halloween-themed vocabulary words and drew a picture to depict each one.
Principal Charley Hinkle popped in and out of classrooms to see what his students were learning about that day.
He paused in the hallways to show off all of the artwork his students had created in class. There were ice-cream and rainbow-shaped clouds of cotton balls a kindergarten class made.
There were collages of soil, pipe cleaners, noodles and strings.
Hinkle explained that the pieces of art are more than just artwork. Each one was a different lesson for the students.
The class that made the collages was learning about the properties of sand, clay, silt and organic matter. The collages showed what they found in the soil sample they collected. The noodles represented nutrients, and the pipe cleaners were bugs.
In case visitors mistake the projects for random pieces of art, there’s a card next to each one telling them otherwise. Teachers print out the cards to show people what standards went along with it.
“We really don’t want the feeling that all we do is dance and sing all day,” he said.
If anyone tries to argue that, though, all Hinkle has to do is show them his school’s test scores.