Collaborative Observations of the Ordering Principles
of Symmetry, Geometry, and Nature
(a Kaleidoscopic Research Investigation, Pilot II)
Materials: acrylic paint, ink, paper, graphite, and wood panel
About the Work & the Artists
Amy Leidtke, Janine A. Lee, and the fifth grade class at Community Preparatory School, including, Sophia-Joy Agbelese, Amida Akpan, Tessah Almonacy, Maeve Collins, Lesley Flores, Quincy Griffin, David Gutierrez, Ger Lee, Tamira Lopes, Yasira Paulino, Deijah Prak-Preaster, Jalia Ramos, Robert Rosas, Gianny Santos, Carina Santos, Irca Sian, Jasper Summers
This collaborative artwork was created by seventeen G5
Community Preparatory School students, along with Arts Educator, Janine A. Lee and Master Teaching Artist | Industrial Designer | Educator, Amy Leidtke. It represents the culmination of a multiple phase project, developed to activate children’s minds and hands in meaningful academically integrated curriculum that is engaging, fun, and creative.
For more about Community Prep and this project, please go to:
More reflections from the students and instructors:
Student Reflection: “This experience changed the way I look at the world. You realize how many shapes and details there are everywhere. If you look closer at your surroundings there’s a whole other world of shapes and colors that you can’t imagine. I didn’t know what I was capable of and Ms. Amy and Ms. Lee helped me find what I could do. The geometry that was mixed in help me comprehend shapes more. …(This project) helped me feel like I was doing a great job and (gave) me confidence.” – Maeve, Grade 5
Art Teacher's Reflection: “Amy initiated us working together and I have been grateful and fortunate to welcome her into my creative arts classroom ever since. She is an exceptional artist and designer. She provides my students with the opportunity to interact with a professional who views them as young artists she can inspire and who can inspire her. Amy is a guiding force who leads us to inquiry, investigation, exploration and discovery. Through working with her have we been exposed to the world of design thinking, process and work; sharing that with others both within and outside of our school community. Every project exchange with Amy is a valuable, rewarding and unforgettable experience. It is through RISCA funding that these experiences are possible for Community Preparatory School.” – Janine A. Lee, Community Preparatory School Arts Educator
Master Teaching Artist's Reflection: “As a professional industrial design practitioner, artist, and RISD faculty member, one of my goals is to practice ‘community-engaged scholarship’ (Boyer, 1996).  I believe this work, which is focused on researching and designing academically integrated arts curriculum and products, in the pursuit of producing educational ‘gifts’, is an important way to positively impact the lives of young citizens in Rhode Island.
Children benefit from access to practicing artists and designers, and I am happy that my background, education, faculty position, and research interests make it possible for me to serve in this role. Children need greater access to opportunities to experience the arts in meaningful and multidisciplinary ways.
It is remarkably rewarding to co-create things with children and teachers! Janine is easy to work with and an amazingly capable and multidisciplinary arts educator. She is great with her students, patient, firm, and caring. The collaborative partnership that we developed together over the past several years is one that I highly value. She has been so generous to welcome me into her classroom, an environment that I consider to be crucial to the successful development of my work, as a designer and as an artist.
It is important to note that the experiences we create in her arts classroom at Community Preparatory School are partially supported by RISCA funding. The funding for this particular project partially covered time and materials. Thank you to RISCA for helping to support this form of work.” – Reflection from Amy Leidtke