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We’ve had an exciting few months filled with dancing and yoga-loving teaching artists, creative scientists, and math-inspired visual artists visiting our schools and giving our kids hands-on projects and real-world learning experiences. Enjoy a few of the highlights!



  • Art Start Teaching Artist LeKeya Shearrill led Ms. Schweigert’s second graders at Beye in song and dance to ’70s music by Michael Jackson and others in celebration of African American history month. Photos by Angela Farnham.


  • Art Start Teaching Artist Kim Vulinovic of Yoga Kids Oak Park stretched showed the students in Ms. Nikolakakis class the practice and benefits of yoga. The movements and poses were linked to the classroom curriculum about the weather.


  • Second graders in Ms. Yigsaw and Mr. Roll’s classes worked with Art Start Teaching Artist Jonathan Franklin on math-inspired art projects.  From fractals to Sierpinski triangles, these students explore the ways that math skills are linked to art.


  • Ms. Gullo’s kindergarten class worked with Art Start Teaching Artist Jonathan Franklin to create three-sided houses. The project covered current curriculum concepts such as symmetry and opposites.
  • Science Alliance partner Christopher Ferrigno, a scientist and instructor from Rush University, taught second graders about how the different parts of the brain function. The kids also got the chance to dissect a sheep’s brain.
  • Science Alliance partner Craig Hendee of the Middle East Falcon Research Group and his peregrine falcon, Alvin, visited the entire 5th grade.


  • First graders learned what it takes to become an astronaut while Kim Vulinovic of Yoga Kids Oak Park showed them poses that reflect an astronaut’s training.


  • Mr. Naber’s second-graders at Longfellow chose a particular community to build — rural, suburban, or urban. They measured their buildings using centimeters and inches, comparing the sizes with a partner. As part the project, the students wrote a fictional narrative about their own community.


  • Kindergartners performed creative dances based on children’s literature with Art Start Teaching Artist Diane VanDerhei. Students wrote dance sentences using symbols then performed for their peers.  


  • Science Alliance partner Dr. Friesen, a chemistry professor at Dominican University, visited Ms. Darley’s fourth-grade class to study “forensic science.” The class conducted experiments to analyze and identify a variety of white powders.
  • Dr. Kupperman explored the laws of physics and chemistry through a series of experiments using catapults, paper helicopters, balloons, and rockets made from plastic bottles.



  • Children in Mr. Leban’s first and second-period classes learned about architecture around the world. They identified a specific part of a building that they liked and recreated it with, squares, pen and paper.


  • Sundeepa Kaur Chugh visited Mr. Magierski’s arts and culture classes to complement the students’ study of India. Sundeepa gave a brief history, including religion and religious festivals, colonization by the British, and national symbols. A large part of her presentations included the culture and diversity of the Indian people.