In today’s world, peace needs to become more than just a word.
Wednesday, in conjunction with the National Guard troop send-off, Tyrone Area Elementary School second graders took part in an International art and literacy project, Pinwheels for Peace by “planting” pinwheels they made with messages of peace in the front of the elementary school.
Elementary art teacher, Mrs. Ann Yaniello, guided the students in the project.
Pinwheels for Peace is an 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’s going on in the world and in their lives.
In the first year, groups in over 1,325 locations throughout the world were spinning pinwheels on September 21 – there were approximately 500,000 pinwheels spinning throughout the world.
Last year, over 1.2 million pinwheels were spinning in over 2,500 locations, including the United States, Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada, the Middle East, Africa and South America.
Tyrone held its pinwheel planting Wednesday to coordinate with the local National Guard troop parade, so the children could show their support for the troops.
The pinwheel project is non-political – peace doesn’t necessarily have to be associated with the conflict of war, it can be related to violence and intolerance in people’s daily lives, to peace of mind.
To everyone, peace can take on a different meaning, but, in the end, it all comes down to a simple definition: “a state of calm and serenity, with no anxiety, the absence of violence, freedom from conflict or disagreement among people or groups of people.”
Shown above is Mrs. Amy Fleck’s second grade class getting ready to plant their pinwheels minutes before the National Guard troop parade began. The pinwheels could be of all shapes and sizes, and as part of the creation project, the students wrote their thoughts about war and peace, tolerance, and living in harmony with others on one side. On the other side, the kids drew, painted, or collaged a visual expression of their feelings.
The students planted their pinwheels as a public statement and art exhibit. Keep a lookout for the pinwheels, because the spinning of the pinwheels in the wind will spread thoughts and feelings about peace throughout the country and the world.