When a tornado ripped through Round Rock on March 21, some Round Rock families lost everything and luckily escaped without serious injury.
Round Rock ISD art educator Carolyn Scalan couldn’t forget the devastation her students had suffered. An artist herself, she turned to the healing power of art to help her students come to terms with their feelings.
“I knew our district councilors and social workers looked after the basic needs of our families, such as food and shelter,” Scalan said. “I love my students so much. I wanted them to see that their community cares about them.
Scalan created an Amazon wishlist full of art supplies and sent out a request for donations on his social media. A week later, dozens of Amazon boxes of supplies arrived at her house every day for more than a week. Scalan estimates she received more than $2,500 in donated supplies.
Scalan, her husband, and a teacher friend sorted supplies and packed art-care kits to take home. More than 200 Callison Elementary School students affected by the tornado and some newly enrolled Afghan refugees received a kit containing five sheets of thick paper, watercolors, markers, crayons, eraser, pencil, small pencil sharpener and a mini sketchbook.
“Food, shelter and medical care are essential, but these art supplies are for children, something special for them,” Scalan said. “Art is a way to express our feelings, and it can help us process things and bring us joy in difficult times.”
Scalan received a drawing from a recipient of the kit. The student took great care to prepare a drawing of the supplies she received in her art care kit.
For more information about art in our schools, send us a Let’s Talk.