Amy Groom, art teacher at Wellington High School, gave her 70 students an assignment due May 1, and she would love for people in the community to take part in it too.
Many of us remember leaving May Day baskets on neighbors’ porches, as children. Instead of Mayday baskets with flowers, Groom has assigned her students to create 3D sculptures of hearts to place at someone’s doorstep. She created a Facebook event for it, the “May Day ‘Have a Heart’ COVID-19 project” and shared her idea with all USD 353 employees, hoping the word would spread. People can place the heart in the yard of a friend, family member or neighbor.
”I think during this pandemic and our isolation it is important to let others know you are thinking about them, that they are loved,” Groom said on her Facebook event page. “What better symbol to show that than a heart?
The guidelines Groom has given her students are that hearts must be 3D - a sculpture! They can be made out of anything you can find or collect - paper mache, chicken wire, cardboard, plastic bottles, milk jugs, aluminum cans, styrofoam, yarn pom poms, sticks, pinecones, toilet paper tubes, cloth sewn and stuffed, egg cartons, crochet or knitted, wood scraps, etc.
“The plan is to use what you have, don’t go to the store and get things to build with,” her Facebook event page said. “Look in your shed, garage, yard, recycle bin, craft closet! What can you find to build with?”
Students are to make the heart at least 12 inches so it can be seen from the street.
It can be put on a stake in the yard or hung from a tree or front porch.
“This idea is 100% from my brain,” Groom said. “I teach ceramics and was trying to come up with a 3D project that those students could do without clay. Somewhere on the internet a saw a photo of a 3D heart on a stake in front of a booth at a craft fair. Hearts, although kitsch, are relatable to everyone. I thought it would be great to share with the community for May Day. There is so much art being shared worldwide during our quarantine, I thought it would be great for our community to join in.”
Groom admitted that she is a procrastinator and hasn’t started her own project yet, but it’s not too late to begin, she said.
“My hope is that all ages are going to participate. We'll see. I'm excited to drive around town Friday to search for hearts,” she said.