The first and second graders at North Yarmouth Academy (NYA) will participate in an international art and literacy project entitled Pinwheels for Peace by “planting” pinwheels with messages of peace on the front lawn of campus (148 Main Street, Yarmouth, Maine). The pinwheels will be installed on Thursday, September 18 at approximately 2:00 p.m. (Friday at 8:30 a.m. if raining). They will remain up until Monday, September 22. (The United Nations International Peace Day is Sunday, September 21.)
Pinwheels for Peace is a non-political art installation project started in 2005 by two art teachers, Ann Ayers and Ellen McMillan, of Coconut Creek, Florida, as a way for students to express their feelings about what is going on in the world and in their lives. In the first year, groups in over 1,325 locations throughout the world were spinning 500,000 pinwheels on September 21. Last year (year nine), over 4.5 million pinwheels were spinning in over 3,500 locations, including the United States, Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada, the Middle East, Africa and South America.
All NYA students, teachers, staff and parents can participate by visiting the first and second grade classroom during several pinwheel-making sessions. As part of the creation process, participants will write their thoughts about peace on one side of the pinwheel. On the other side, they will draw, paint, collage, etc. to visually express their feelings. For International Peace Day, they will “plant” their pinwheels on NYA’s front lawn as a public statement and art exhibit/installation.
“In our classroom, we have been talking about peace and how it doesn’t have to be associated with the conflict of war,” said first and second grade teacher Anna Langstaff. “We expect to have hundreds of pinwheels displayed on the lawn. The students are really excited with this project,” she said. “We hope the spinning of the pinwheels in the wind will spread thoughts and feelings about peace throughout the country and the world!”
North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school serving toddlers to students in grade twelve. For 200 years, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org. For more information on Pinwheels for Peace, go to pinwheelsforpeace.com.