On Thursday evening we held our annual Art Show and Auction.  This show was bitter-sweet as our art teacher, Kristin Sluhan, is retiring this school year.  The reason our school is so successful is because of our amazing teachers.  They all have a passion for early childhood education, and they make our school what it is!  Each has had their own journey and story with us, but Kristin’s is a little different.

I have known Kristin since I was fourteen years old, she is my best friend in the world. Not only is she my best friend, but she is an unbelievable artist.  In 2016 she moved back to the area and I convinced her to come to EWP to be our first ever art teacher.  I knew that she would be amazing, and she did not disappoint.  She developed a program that showcased artists, customs, and cultures from all over the world.  Her journey here started with just a cart full of art supplies that she would roll from room to room for a few minutes every week. Through the years the program evolved and now students spend up to an hour each week exploring different mediums in a dedicated art room.  They work on a focus project for the art show and then explore stations including sculpture, drawing, painting, and collage.  She collects all of the focus work throughout the year, and then lovingly mounts each piece and plots out a themed art show.

Overall she has created four themed shows, “Art is Everywhere”(environmental art), “Famous Artists”, “Night at the Museum” (famous museums worldwide), and “Art Around the World”.  This year was “Art Around the World”.  Each classroom represented a continent and showcase art inspired by the culture and landscape of the area.  Children traveled the globe learning about things like the coral reef in Australia, the windmills in Europe, and totem poles in North America, just to name a few. There are thousands of pieces that are on display at the show.  The day of the art show, school is closed and the teachers transform the space from a preschool to a museum. This is a huge team effort and I am forever grateful to each and every one of the teachers at EWP!

Below is a link to the story the Maumee Mirror did about Kristin. Although Kristin may not physically be here in the future, the program she designed will continue to inspire children for years to come. She will forever hold the title, “First Elizabeth Wayne Art Teacher”.  Thank you, Kristin!  Thank you for everything you had done for our program!

-Cristy Seely, Director