Anansesem Editors invited to Art Day Pilot Program

Anansesem is currently on a publication hiatus, but we have not stopped working behind the scenes!

Anansesem Founder and Art Editor, Summer Edward and Colin Bootman respectively, were recently invited to participate in the "Painting the Word" Art Day pilot program at Toco Secondary School in Trinidad.

Art Day, an initiative spearheaded by Trinidadian author/editor/publisher Danielle Delon, seeks to be an island-wide progam that will bring art education and prominent Trinidad and Tobago artists into the islands' schools. Student writing and art produced during Art Day events will be published as anthologies. An official proposal has been put forth to the Ministry of Education and is pending approval.

Although Bootman could not attend, Edward, along with Delon, helped Trinidadian artist Eddie Bowen facilitate the pilot program with 24 students from the Toco Secondary and Matelot Community RC schools. A group of 5 teachers from both schools were also on hand to assist.

In keeping with the theme of "rivers and bridges", students created artwork to build upon creative writing projects completed ahead of time in preparation for the pilot program. Students were guided in art techniques and had opportunities to read and discuss their writing and art. Delon, who will soon release a photo-reportage book on the bridges of Trinidad and Tobago, shared her specialized knowledge with students and teachers. At the end of the 5-hour interactive session, students and teachers gave overwhelmingly positive feedback.

Student art produced during the Art Day Pilot Program

Delon, who founded one of Trinidad and Tobago's first publishing houses, Cassique Publications, is renewing her efforts as a publisher and has extended her work to school outreach and youth development. Delon is also the Director of the NGC Bocas Children's Lit Festival, although the Art Day program is an independent project.

Toco Secondary School, the site of the pilot program, is set to be renamed after Trinidad and Tobago's second Olympic gold medalist and former pupil, Keshorn Walcott, however the school is in dire need of repairs. "The students are bright and beautiful and along with the compulsory subjects, the curriculum prepares students to excel in fields like textile arts and the industrial arts," Edward noted, "But the classroom
walls are bare, the air-condition units are leaking badly, and they are in dire need of more materials and supplies. There is only one English teacher at the school who has to juggle all the classes."

Individuals or organizations wishing to assist or donate supplies to Toco Secondary School can contact the school directly at (868) 670-8261.

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About Anansesem

Anansesem is an online magazine of Caribbean children's and young adult literature by adults and children. We strive to bring you the best in news, reviews and creative content from the world of Caribbean children's publishing.
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