There’s always something novel happening at Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School. Students recently participated in “Cardboard Day of Play” and experienced a different spin on the usual art class.
Students in teacher Karen Morea’s art classes were able to participate in a unique lesson that combined art and science and even math. The Cardboard Challenge is a global event held annually October. Children from around the country are encouraged to use cardboard and other recycled materials to invent and create “new” things from something old.
Students watched the 2011 video Caine’s Arcade. It tells the story of a nine year old boy in East Los Angeles who spends much of his vacation hanging out at his dad’s car shop. The shop is filled with boxes and to pass time, Caine creates an entire arcade out of the boxes, with games, tickets, prizes and fun passes. Visit this link to watch the video:
The video captured the hearts of many, who donated $240,000 to Caine’s Scholarship Fund. To date, 875,000 youngsters across 80 countries have participated in the Cardboard Challenge.
After viewing the short film, the STEM students were given the challenge of developing their own inventions using cardboard and other recycled materials. “Students had a great time,” Ms. Morea said. “It was so exciting to see them problem solve to get their inventions to work the way they wanted.”
The STEM students worked together to invent all sorts of things from basketball and soccer games and TV sets to tiny stores and even dollhouses.
“At Jack Abrams, we look to integrate science and engineering practices into all we do and that includes art class,” Principal Donna Moro said. “This was a wonderful event that really challenged our student’s creativity, critical thinking and collaboration skills.”
Ms. Morea began her Huntington career in 2006. She has taught elementary grade level art at Washington, Jefferson and Southdown Primary Schools and Huntington Intermediate/Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School. Four years ago she began teaching seventh and eighth grade art classes at J. Taylor Finley Middle School, too.
A graduate of Our Lady of Mercy Academy in Syosset, Mr. Morea obtained an undergraduate degree with a focus on studio art at SUNY Geneseo. She earned a Masters in Art Education degree at Long Island University- CW Post. She is always striving to learn more about new art techniques and ideas for her classes.