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WFE Sixth-Grader’s Artwork Featured in National Display

Friday, April 15, 2016 -

 Little did Willow Field Elementary sixth-grader Alexis Price know that when she created a ceramic mug and cookie wfecookiemonstermugholder during art class her hard work would pay off in a big way.

Price’s completed project, Cookie Monster Mug, was selected for display during the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts’ 50th Anniversary Project called Across the Table, Across the Land. The display will continue through the end of April at the Charlotte Street Foundation in Kansas City, Missouri.

WFE art teacher Danielle Ruggiero has attended NCECA conferences in the past and learned about the anniversary project’s K-12 Challenge prior to this year’s conference. She felt it would be the perfect project-based learning opportunity for her sixth-grade students.

The NCECA’s project asked students to explore the concept that ceramic arts and food create a sense of community and meaning in everyday life. Ruggiero knew right away that while the main focus of the project was art, it also could encompass social studies and English Language Arts. So she collaborated with WFE sixth-grade teachers Alison Ellsworth, Amy Esposito-Trumble and Hope Everts to create several lessons discussing the role ceramic arts played in ancient civilizations.

Students were then asked to brainstorm a variety of ceramic projects that could be a part of the eating experience. The sixth-graders they soon designed and created unique objects that could be used for meals or snacks.

As part of the project, the students also had to provide answers to several food and community related questions, such as how food relates to a social situation and how it helps define who we are as an individual and as a community.

Before they submitted their work for inclusion in Across the Table, Across the Land, the sixth-graders held a special luncheon where they tried out their creations.

In addition to Price’s Cookie Monster Mug being selected for display, several WFE students had their work selected for inclusion in the project’s social media feed. Selected were sixth-graders Olivia Coleman (Woven Cup), JJ Guindy (Chips and Salsa), Billy Balduf (Waffle Tray and Syrup Saucer), Bella Otero (Grapes), Jessica Price (Pineapple Cookie Jar), Soriah Holmes (Under the Sea Water Set), Lilly Radel (Snowman Teapot), Mia Sateriale (Multi-Handled Cup), Leah Trimm (Cup for Milk), Emily Fenner (Muffin Jar), Alex Shubsda (Tardis Jar), Sarah Clark (Coffee Mug and Sugar Jar), Riley Williams (Pizza Plate), Brianna Ingram (Musical Teapot), Kaylee Williams (Fish Plate), Skylar Sobolewski (Whale Mug), Jake Socker (Trifecta Food), Justin Ochiabuto (Basketball Popcorn Plate), Jeremy LaManche (Baseball Plate) and Laurel Grant (Cheeseball Platter). To view their work, visit

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