My wife and I have three children, all either currently enrolled or SoG alumni. Our oldest son started out at SoG as a Tadpole (2-3 year olds) almost seven years ago. Our second son just completed his third year at SoG and our daughter will begin her second year in the Turtle Class (infant/toddler) in the Fall.
Every year I look forward to The School of Grace Art Show. It is an exciting event put on by the teachers to display the children’s art work throughout the school year. Several years ago I was lucky enough to serve on the Board of Directors, where I learned just how much goes into pulling off this incredible event. The artwork is displayed for a week in the Spring and closes with a celebration after the second church service on Sunday. Parents, students, staff, former students, church members and friends gather during the reception to mingle, eat and admire amazing creations of art.
The Art Show took on a different meaning for our family this year, as it was my wife’s first year teaching the 2-3 year olds’ Tadpole Class. A few months before the event, our house became an art show preparation extravaganza. Old High School Yearbooks, dated Webster’s Dictionaries and many Encyclopedias were stacked all around our house to flatten her students’ artwork in preparation for ‘mounting’ it. She asked our oldest son and I to help her narrow down artwork pieces which proved to be much harder decisions than we expected.
Once the prep work is all said and done, the teachers get together during a workday and begin to put it all together. Each class has a canopy where ropes are hung to display artwork. During the week of the Art Show, each class visits the Fellowship Hall where the canopies are set up. Students choose their favorite piece of artwork they created and attach a Purple Crayon Award. Yet another quality I truly love about The School of Grace: every child is a winner and each child chooses their own artwork that wins the award.
I could compose a novel and list all the fantastic art I’ve seen over the years but it still wouldn’t paint an accurate picture of what this preschool family looks like when we come together to celebrate the children. My oldest son still loves to look through a giant Rubbermaid bin in the attic full of his artwork from The School of Grace. Our toddlers will too someday. I don’t think they understand just how special this event is until they move on to Kindergarten and leave the Art Show behind.
My wife and kids came by to visit me this afternoon at the office. I have picked artwork from SoG Art Shows over the past seven years and displayed them on a whiteboard in my office that we no longer use due to advances in technology. I wish I had my own Art Show canopy, but the whiteboard will have to do for now. Of course all three of them have a piece of art with a Purple Crayon Award attached.
The kids were making their rounds to other offices saying hello to my co-workers, until they heard my wife say, “Oh my goodness! Come here you guys! Daddy has his own Art Show in his office!” Again, the little ones don’t quite get it yet, but our seven year old definitely does. The artwork makes him feel so special…so special we needed his autograph below.