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Archive for April, 2020

Take a moment and enjoy it

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Handmade paper by Mrs. Mills second grade class, Oceanside, NY

Story by Jennifer Amiruddin, Oceanside, NY

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Tree in my Grama’s back yard

Handmade paper and stories by Mrs. Mills second grade class, Oceanside, NY

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Handmade paper and stories by Mrs. Mills second grade class, Oceanside, NY

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Handmade paper by Mrs. Mills second grade class, Oceanside, NY/ Story by Catherine Quinn, Rockville Centre, NY

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Hanging on a tree

Handmade paper and stories by Mrs. Mills second grade class, Oceanside, NY

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I love trees

Handmade paper and stories by Mrs. Mills second grade class, Oceanside, NY

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Back in February 2020, school was still in session and a visit with Mrs. Mills second-grade class at Oceanside School #5 graced my day. We not only made handmade paper—we huddled and hugged.

It was a exciting morning in Mrs. Mills second grade, Oceanside, NY. 

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Enthusiastic students discussed various forms of art (painting, drawing, sculpture, calligraphy—and papermaking!), inspirational resources (nature, trees—you get the drift!) and Treewhispers—an ongoing international collaboration awakening our heartfelt connection to trees. We shared lots of tree stories about climbing trees, planting trees, and our favorite trees.

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Everyone was so very attentive as we discussed the process of papermaking using recycled paper (old homework to be exact!). We tore the paper, blended it with water, hogged the vat to disperse the paper fibers, and learned how to use a mould and deckle (AKA embroidery hoop in this case). We dipped the mould and deckle  into the vat (tub), lifted with gentle shakes then let the water drain before we couched it onto a damp cloth.

Tearing up old homework was so much fun and you could actually see remnants of it in the final paper!

We dipped the mould and deckle  into the vat (tub), then pulled it up gathering the pulp on the screen while gently shaking to disperse fibers.

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Paper is being formed on the screen as water settles through it.

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The deckle is removed and the mould is gently flipped onto the awaiting surface— shop towels.IMG_1460

A sponge is used to press the pulp onto the shop towel and remove moisture from the newly formed paper. The mould is removed.

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Another screen is placed on top and pressing with the sponge continues until most of the moisture is removed.

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Once the paper is dry* the inspired second grade authors and illustrators shared their love of and connection to trees.

*The paper can dry naturally overnight on a dry shop towel or newspaper —or (an adult) can be carefully press the paper between shop towels with an iron.

It was a great day!

The students shared the extra paper rounds with their family members—stay tuned for their insightful stories!

Happy Earth Day!!!

Much gratitude to Mrs. Mills and all the incredible children and adults who so enthusiastically participated in this ongoing project awakening  heartfelt connections to trees!

 

 

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