“God loves you.”
Those are just a few of the inspirational messages that have been painted on rocks and scattered around campus in the last few weeks by Heathwood students, parents, and teachers.
The idea came from 3rd Grade Teacher Kim Bain, after a visit to Edisto Beach, which has launched a similar project. “It started with the teachers and then spread from there,” says Early Childhood and Lower School Art Teacher Melissa Brookshire, whose 4K through 4th grade students have been painting rocks in art class. “It’s been a fun way to start the year, and it’s fun to have art around campus.”
After the rocks have been painted, Lower School students hide them around campus for other students to find. Early Childhood students in particular have enjoyed searching for the rocks—perhaps in part because of the thought that has gone into creating them. “The 4th graders wanted to create rocks that they knew younger students would like,” Ms. Brookshire says. “Knowing that many of our Early Childhood students can’t read, they focused on images and emojis.”
The goal was to sprinkle the campus with inspirational messages. But in some ways, the project has been just as inspiring for those creating the rocks as for those who find them. “Even the Lower School boys who think, ‘I can’t paint, I can’t draw,” have gotten into it and done great work,” says Ms. Brookshire. “And then they realize, ‘Aha! I just did art!’”