DAREarts Blog

Discipline, Action, Responsibility, Excellence

Introduction Day–January 11–Grade 5 East

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Written by DAREarts Teachers Geneviève Anthony and Valerie Kostyniuk.

How was power distributed in 17th century Europe? How does one think critically and therefore question long-held assumptions? How can one person’s curiosity and bravery change the world?

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Photo courtesy Valerie Kostyniuk.

Intro Day to the Baroque 17th Century for our Grade 5 East delegates was certainly full of big ideas. It was something simple, though, that really stayed with me today. Together with guest artist Ildiko Hencz, the delegates made Baroque-style vests, ornately decorated with ribbons, buttons and other baubles. It became apparent quite quickly that many of the students were not used to working with their hands or to performing detailed work. The group, a talkative one, grew noticeably quieter as they sat down to complete the project. Weaving the ribbons onto the vest in a diamond pattern took concentration and skill, and many students were initially frustrated with the task.

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Photo courtesy Valerie Kostyniuk.

Rising to the DAREarts challenge to be responsible and supportive team members, those students who took more quickly to the work helped others to understand what was required. As the minutes ticked by, more and more students became invested in what they were creating, committing a lot of time and sustained attention to their garment. Once they’d completed their vests, the volume went up again as students showed off their creations. Many even strutted a little, showing off their ‘bling bling’ (which is a synonym for ostentatious decoration, as I learned today) with the confidence that comes from putting effort into something that turns out well.

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