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Literacy Festival: Reporter for a Day

Posted: December 27, 2010 10:08 p.m.
Updated: December 28, 2010 4:55 a.m.
A Literacy & Arts Festival attendee puts her puzzle piece on the big board. When all the pieces are posted, the finished picture would look like this T-shirt artwork. The Newhall festival is meant to expose students to the world of books. A Literacy & Arts Festival attendee puts her puzzle piece on the big board. When all the pieces are posted, the finished picture would look like this T-shirt artwork. The Newhall festival is meant to expose students to the world of books.
A Literacy & Arts Festival attendee puts her puzzle piece on the big board. When all the pieces are posted, the finished picture would look like this T-shirt artwork. The Newhall festival is meant to expose students to the world of books.

Puzzle Peices

By Nicole Park

On Dec. 4, was the Literacy & Arts Festival for young students.

Held at Newhall Park, all the different reading and art booths had a unique way of letting kids express their imagination.

One of them was the Puzzle Booth, where you could color one of the 256 pieces that would make up a giant eight-by-eight puzzle.

The finished puzzle would look like the red and white Literacy & Arts Festival T-shirt.   Coloring snowflakes on his puzzle piece, 7-year-old Jake Shultz says, “I like art and I like drawing suns!” 

“The most important thing about art is that it gives kids the chance to create things that are their very own,” said John Fossa, art teacher for the Newhall School District.

“Instead of just doing things that other people want them to do, art gives them a chance to make something from their own imagination that really belongs to them.” 

Many of the kids placed their masterpieces on the puzzle board to get one step closer to accomplishing the giant puzzle.  So, try to make art a piece of the puzzle that makes up your life.

Art teacher finds perfect balance at Literacy Festival

By Emily Birken

The Literacy & Art Festival took place in Newhall at Newhall Park. One of the attractions was Story Village which had four booths and about 44 reading sessions. Books were read to many children from the Santa Clarita Valley most of them students in our own community.

One of the readers was T. Katz.  Her latest book is “Miss L’eau.”  Some of her favorite books to read are “Hooray For Diffendoofer Day” by Dr. Seuss, “Were the Wild Things Are,” by Maurice Sendak, and a new book, “Soccer Mom From Outer Space” by Barney Saltzberg.

The kids she read to sat on a red blanket in a tent decorated with famous authors photos.  Katz made it feel like we were in the story.  When asked,  “Why is reading important?”  Katz said “Words are power; words can change the world.”

Let us hope this event takes place again next year because it was a lot of fun and very educational. 

Dot painting and The Great Shoe Hunt

By Skylar Eisenberg

The ARTree is where kids can come together to create works of art. One of the activities the managers there had set up was “Dot Painting.”

Dot painting is basically fingerpainting. There was a gigantic canvas set up with a picture of a book.

You dip one of your fingers in puny paint buckets and you tap your finger on the canvas over again to paint part of the picture.

You participate in painting an image with the rest of the community that showed up.   Another activity there was “The Great Shoe Hunt.”

 What you would do was look around for shoes with numbers on them that were hidden around the festival. There was one shoe hidden in a booth and four hidden in trees.

If you found a shoe, you would come back to the ARTree booth and receive a sticker from two women, which would be placed on the number of the shoe.

If you discovered all five shoes, you got prizes such as books, toys, or art supplies.

This activity was made to encourage children to take a part in finding shoes that are works of art and very creatively and beautifully decorated and painted.    
I believe this is an excellent idea for inspiring kids to participate in artwork that they can work together on and will take teamwork to finish a true community masterpiece.

Young sculptors build characters

By Laird Mendelson

An art form requiring much patience and skill was featured at Saturday’s Literacy and Arts Festival. Mrs. Neilsen with Arroyo Seco and Ms. Bastiani with La Mesa Junior Highs were working together at the Sculpt-a-Character booth, where kids could come and sculpt their favorite character from any movie or book out of Crayola air-dry clay.

Mrs. Neilsen and Ms. Bastiani were attending a city art meeting when Ann Unger from the Santa Clarita Valley Education Foundation invited them to attend the festival. The two accepted, and they decided to get a booth.

At this booth, kids were able to sculpt their favorite character using only their fingers, clay and these four basic steps:  1. Make the body with a large clay ball; 2. Make the head with a small ball; 3. Make the arms and legs with thin, worm-like pieces; and 4. add some details and you’re done.

Now that’s how you Sculpt-a-Character!

Focusing on the center of gravity

By Minjae Kang

The fourth annual Santa Clarita Literacy & Arts Festival was held on Dec. 4, at Newhall Park.

Out of the many interesting booths set up, a station called Rock Balancing stood out, with the towering rocks stacked up on each other. The rocks looked like they were going to fall, but Alex Menbez, the man working at the booth, knew the secret recipe to success.

“When balancing the rocks, you need to focus on the center of gravity, and balance them, according to weight and size,” he said.

He also told us that any type of rock would work, as long as you did it right.

Many people, both young or old, were able to enjoy this hobby, because of the rocks set up for them.

I even tried to stack these rocks and I came to a conclusion: It’s very hard.

Even though the hobby is harder than it looks, many people left with a smile.

Story Village lets students hear from authors

By Eleanor McQuillen

At Story Village, a woman named Carole Cliffe, the author of the books   “Alowishe’s Unusual Birthday” and “The Mysterious Balloon,” was reading her stories.

In the story “Alowishe’s Unusual Birthday,” a lion named Alowishe is having birthday party, but his dishonest friends who promised to help do anything but help.

Then an owl tells Alowishe’s friends how important it is to keep your promises.

So, even though his birthday party was one day late, they still had to celebrate.

She thought reading is important because it expands what you are able to think about.

The next author we met was Joella Williams. The book she wrote was The “Clefs Meet The Bug Band.”

In the story, what happens is simple; the Clefs meet the bug band! Joella thinks reading is important because without reading, it is very boring.

Lavender Lucy comes to town

By Kiersten Norfolk

I went to Literacy & Arts Festival this past Dec. 4th.  I had the chance to interview an amazing author named Cori Paul.

Paul enjoys writing books that help her own children grow their imagination and creativity. She says that another great reward that she gets from her writing is meeting new people that she would otherwise not have met.

Paul says that she has enjoyed writing her whole life. One day she decided that she should write a book. The book that she wrote is called “Lavender Lucy.”

Paul’s inspiration for the book was her sister. When her sister was a child, her favorite color was lavender and all of the clothes that she wore just had to be lavender.

Paul’s book is about a girl named Lavender Lucy that loves the color lavender. One night in her sleep, Lavender Lucy was cursed, and everything that she owned turned blue.

I would love to tell you how the story continues, but that wouldn’t be fair to all of you. To find out more about this amazing story and the adventures of Lavender Lucy, you’re going to need to buy the book.

If you are a little girl reading this, I suggest that you ask your parents to buy you this book. I read it and it is awesome.

If you are a parent or a grandparent, do your daughter or granddaughter a favor and buy them this book. It is really interesting and she will keep it forever.


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