Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Scrapbooks for My Son's 4th Grade Class & Teacher

The end of May is always crazy busy, mostly due to end of year school activities.  Thankfully, the shows I was involved with were early May.

In the last few weeks I have worked several days a week at school.  Add to that, the days I have been at my son's school as a volunteer.  4th Grade at Governor's Ranch is full with tradition.  The 4th graders study and work towards Colorado Day for weeks before the day of their presentation held on May 16th. Each student selects a person who has made a contribution to Colorado's history.  On Colorado day, the student comes to school dressed up like that historical person and presents a board with facts and information about the historical person's life and contributions.  I was in the classroom all day to capture each of the kids presentation on film, which would become a big part of a scrapbook I created for each student.  The kids also have a lunch box social during Colorado Day (a favorite of the students).  They fill out a questionnaire with their preferred lunch choices and their lunch partner decorates or handcrafts a lunch box for that student.

My son Alex was "Otto Mears" during Colorado day.  His lunch partner was "Molly Brown", survivor of the titanic.  This is the lunch box my son decorated for "Molly Brown."

I don't post pictures of my kids on my blog, for reason's I have mentioned before.  However, since he is in costume and wearing a big beard, I thought I could make an exception.  
 Here is Alex's display:

When we first moved to Colorado, my daughter Laura was starting 4th grade and Alex was only 2 years old.  This was eight years ago.  Laura is now a Senior, as of a few days ago.  Alex has two more days of 4th Grade.

At the end of Laura's 4th Grade year, I gave every student in her class a personalized scrapbook with pictures I had taken throughout the year.  The scrapbooks had pictures from the start of the school year all through the end, including many pictures from Colorado Day.  Eight years ago, my creative energy was spent more on scrap-booking, so I was able to work on those scrapbooks on and off for many months.

These days, I have very limited time for projects like creating a scrapbook for every student in Alex's class.  Especially since now I spend as much time as I can on creating handcrafted items for Isa Creations and work part-time as a substitute teacher and/or paraprofessional (teacher's aide). 

But, I felt I should try to give Alex a similar experience his sister had when she was in the 4th Grade.  Although the personalized scrapbooks I created for each of Alex's classmates is a much less comprehensive scrapbook than Laura's classmates, it actually comes close.  I have worked on them almost round the clock for two weekends.

The scrapbooks are a hybrid of digital scrap-booking and simple traditional scrap-booking.  With the help of Alex's teacher, Mrs. Walls, I was able to incorporate the kids owns words by incorporating some of their work, including a self portrait.  The self portraits were on a much larger paper, which I photographed.  The photograph was resized onto an 8.5 x 11 sheet.  Here is Alex's self portrait now part of his 4th Grade scrapbook.

Here is the cover for each scrapbook, personalized with the name of each student on each cover.

The scrapbooks include 4 pages of personalized digital layouts of Colorado Day.  Black card-stock pages with photos from Halloween, Holiday Class party, and pictures of their Diorama's (which were done on May 23, 2014).  I have taken all the photos in these scrapbooks.  Although I may not scrapbook like I did at one time, I continue to take lots of pictures.  A page with Mrs. Wall's picture along with a note from her to each student. I added a page with a pocket so the kids can add other school memorabilia along with blank black card stock pages where they can add additional photos.  I created a book for Mrs. Walls using the Colorado Day layouts I created for her students. 

This project has taken more than two entire weekends to accomplish.  Why do this?  For my son Alex.   It's a labor of love.  This is something I did for his sister and her classmates when she was in 4th grade.  Now that he is just finishing 4th grade, I want to do something similar.

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