2017-2018: Episode 18
Good morning WHS community,
This week, with our February vacation just around the corner, we have a special guest blog from Mr. Paul Hackett. Mr. Hackett is one of our art teachers and he has been working on a very interesting cross-curricular project with his students that combines art and data.
Translating & Tracking Data with Art
By Paul Hackett, Visual Art Teacher
In the age of big data, how do we synthesize information and express meaning visually? Each year I challenge my Honors Art class to collect data over a three-week period and express their findings visually through art.
Our students (often) respond in two ways. Many collect existing bodies of scientific data, and others use technology apps to self-track data of their own. I’d like to share a few responses from this year’s class.
Kei Fieleke created a digital piece using photographs she took of fifty Winchester High School students to compose a singular portrait she titles “Amalgamation”. Kei writes: “In a sense, I have created “the average” Winchester High School student, but on their own, every single person…has their own individuality…there are thousands of different stories from the people displayed…”.
Haley Garabedian used an app to track the most played songs on her 2017 Spotify playlist. To express the data visually she coupled musical genres together in boxes, drawing album covers in tiny squares. “I was a bit embarrassed by some of the song choices”, Haley explained. “But, the data does not lie”.
Olivia Baldacci used an app to track her phone usage over a week’s time. She drew a portrait of the phone over her face, listing the amount of time spent each day. In her statement she writes: “I decided to take data on this because it’s alarming how much of our day we actually spend looking down at a screen. I drew a girl holding her phone in front her with all the data on it to show that its covering so much of her face, and overwhelming her life. In the background I made green vibrant colors because it shows how much she is missing in the real world behind her.”
With the data assignment, students tend to gravitate towards tracking data that directly impacts their day-to-day life. The data starts from a personal inquiry and expands to reveal surprising aspects of our physical, social, and cultural lives. In the future, I hope for students to apply processes in fields of sciences, mathematics, and humanities to visual art; and to discover how art can help uncover new ways of looking at other fields of study.
Thank you for sharing Mr. Hackett!
WHS Students in Madrid: Our students landed safely in Madrid, Spain last week. The students are a part of a cultural exchange for the next 3 weeks where they will be living with host families and traveling throughout Spain.
WHS French/Spanish Paint Night: Below is a picture of one of the many fun little things we do at WHS. Some of our World Languages French and Spanish students get together for a “paint night” with Mrs. Anderson and Mrs. Keane. These are little activities often go unreported or don’t get the praise they deserve but the students remember them!
W.I.N. Block Class of 218 Assembly: All members of the Class of 2018 will be attending a W.I.N. Block assembly brought to WHS by our Coalition for a Safer Community and the Joinonelove.org foundation. The assembly will be about the differences between healthy relationships and potentially abusive relationships. We will be discussing the programming from joinonelove.org called “Behind the post”. You can view the video and some of the discussion materials at https://www.joinonelove.org/ Attendance is expected.
W.I.N. Block Electives Fair: This Wednesday, 2/14, as part of our W.I.N. Block offerings, our students will be invited to attend WHS’s first electives fair. Students in the classes of 2019, 2020, and 2021 will be called down to the cafeteria by grade to visit “booths” dedicated to the different elective offerings WHS has and to ask questions of the teachers and students currently in those electives. This will allow students an opportunity to see what WHS offers, ask questions, and make informed decisions about what electives they want to request for the 2018-19 school year. Attendance is not mandatory.
This concept is a first effort and we are putting it together very quickly to meet the course the selection deadline. Our intent is to grow and evolve this fair in the coming years should we keep the W.I.N. Block concept.
Class of 2019 College Night: 2/15, 7-8:30 pm, WHS Aud
The College Planning Night is the first in a series of programs designed to equip families and students with as much information as possible about the college process and will feature local Admissions professionals who will describe the admissions process from the school’s perspective. This year’s panel includes representatives from Boston University, Merrimack College and UMass Amherst.
Guidance Coordinator Suzanne Ontso will discuss how to get started on the college search process and provide an overview of how to use Naviance.
Students should attend this workshop with their parents.
Night of the Arts: Get ready for NOTA 4.0! Student Council will be hosting their annual Night of the Arts on Tuesday, March 6th, from 6:00pm to 9:00pm to celebrate the artistic talents of WHS students and faculty.
W.I.N. Block Reminder: Wednesday we do have a W.I.N. Block. Please remind our students to sign up online ahead of time. Rosie, our WHS Therapy Dog, is on vacation this week. She will return after February break.
Upcoming Calendar Items:
2/13: WFEE Trivia Bee
2/14: W.I.N. Block: Class of 2018 will have an assembly about Healthy Relationships as presented by the One Love Foundation: https://www.joinonelove.org/
2/15: School Improvement Council (SIC) @ 6:45 AM, principal’s conference room
2/15: Class of 2019 College Night @ 7 PM in the WHS Aud
WHS Sports Schedule: WHS Athletics Calendar
Thank you for reading!