2011-12-08 / Schools

Brookside students show their artsy side

By Stephanie Bertholdo


DIVERSITY MEANS COLOR— Brookside Elementary School thrid-grade twins, Emily and Chloe Merino, are excited to point out Emily’s colorful art piece hanging in the Reflections Gallery during the school’s student recognition night in Nov. 29. Emily, left, submitted a colorful painting to express this year’s Reflection theme, “ Diversity means...” Emily wrote that diversity means “colorful, because even though people are black, brown or white—or any other color, what’s important is your heart.” DIVERSITY MEANS COLOR— Brookside Elementary School thrid-grade twins, Emily and Chloe Merino, are excited to point out Emily’s colorful art piece hanging in the Reflections Gallery during the school’s student recognition night in Nov. 29. Emily, left, submitted a colorful painting to express this year’s Reflection theme, “ Diversity means...” Emily wrote that diversity means “colorful, because even though people are black, brown or white—or any other color, what’s important is your heart.” Brookside Elementary School students in Oak Park were honored last week for their contributions to the California PTA Reflections program.

Thirty-seven students submitted 61 entries into the art competition in seven categories, said Vida Jatulis, chair of this year’s event.

Reflections is a national PTA program that encourages students to explore all forms of art.


WINNERS ALL—Several Brookside Elementary School students display the certificates and trophies they received for their original artwork. 
STEPHANIE BERTHOLDO/Acorn Newspapers WINNERS ALL—Several Brookside Elementary School students display the certificates and trophies they received for their original artwork. STEPHANIE BERTHOLDO/Acorn Newspapers Students from all grade levels participated in this year’s event by submitting entries of original musical compositions, literature, dance, video productions, photography and visual arts tied in with the theme, “Diversity means . . .”

Brookside students were recognized in each category. Winners at the school level will compete at the PTA district level in January.

In visual arts, Alison Wu, Tatiyana Subotnick, Spencer Driggs, Madeline DeMattia, Katie Hearst, Teyen Iremonger and Hannah Sun were honored.

For submissions in the literature category, Rachel Driggs, Joshua Cox, Sophie Burstein, Elisha Tong, Alina Tong, Camryn Cox and Miles Friedman went home with awards.

Photography winners were Andrew Hearst, Elisha Tong, Carson Ritvo, Tiffany Lu and Miles Friedman.

Emily Merino painted a colorful picture to express her feelings about diversity. Attached to her picture was an explanation: “Diversity means colorful, because even though people are black, brown or white or any other color, what’s important is your heart.”

Jatulis said Brookside has hosted the PTA Reflections program for the past six years.

“The program is so valuable— it gives students a chance to express themselves artistically, and to compete and be recognized and celebrated,” Jatulis said. “I think creativity and self-expression are instrumental in developing the whole child.”

Jatulis said that because the program has an annual theme that can be expressed in various art forms, it is easy for a wide range of students to participate.

Julie Prince, Brookside’s PTA president, said state budget cuts have made programs like Reflections all the more important by allowing children the opportunity to express themselves artistically.

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