Middle School Art Students Utilize Technology For Christmas-Themed Projects

Sixth through eighth grade art students are working on their annual gingerbread house projects. Teams design a detailed house around a theme, and when finished they are donated to local charities and nursing homes. Houses are built with a cardboard structure, then covered with graham crackers, icing and candy.
This year each team has been tasked with learning Adobe Illustrator to create their wall and roof structure shapes. Those documents are then being used to cut their shapes out of cardboard. Because of the use of the laser cutter, the structures will be much more precise and safer, while also providing an opportunity to learn architectural principles. Art teacher Heather Niemann remarked, “It’s a great way for students to begin to make the connection between a digital, 2-dimensional model and a 3-d constructed model.”
Fifth grade art students are creating Chrismon ornaments this winter. Chrismon ornaments are made up of Christian symbols and have been around since the 1950s. Each student selected a symbol which is then cut out with the laser cutter. Afterwards, the students put them together, and paint them in white and gold. Says Niemann, “It’s a great way to use the laser cutter to create the symbols, while also teaching about the “Christian underground” symbols that people often used in times of persecution to identify other believers.”