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Through a grant from the Phoenix Suns Charities, Christy Puetz from the Bead Museum facilitated a bead activity for Ms. Davisí 7th grade English classes at Orangewood Elementary School, September 24, 2010.
Christy always comes to a site with an incredible display of beaded objects from cultures around the world to reveal the stories beads can tell about an individual or a group of people who share similar values, ideas and beliefs.
Ms. Davisí English classes have been reading the young reader book "Three Cups of Tea" by Greg Mortenson. http://www.gregmortenson.com Greg Mortenson is the co-founder and Executive Director of nonprofit Central Asia Institute www.ikat.org (1996). Since a 1993 climb on Pakistanís K2, he has dedicated his life to promote community-based education and literacy programs, especially for girls, in remote mountain regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. Mortenson is also founder of Pennies For Peace www.penniesforpeace.org, co-author of the #1 New York Times best-seller, Three Cups of Tea: One Manís Mission to Promote PeaceÖOne School At A Time www.threecupsoftea.com, which has sold over 3.5 million copies and published in 39 countries. He is the author of the new bestseller Stones into Schools: Promoting Peace with Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan www.stonesintoschools.com. Mortenson is a military veteran, and when not overseas, he lives in Montana, USA, with his two children and wife, Dr. Tara Bishop.
In this story Greg begins his journey taking an amber necklace of his sister's who had recently died to Afghanistan to leave on the highest mountain in honor of her life. So begins the story of beads as a metaphor for thoughtful intentions and "Acts of Peace Building" by a peaceful warrior who has since built over 75 schools for young girls in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Through the Cultural Arts Coalition http://artscare.org/cac.intro.shtml these kinds of art making and networking activities are promoted as opportunities to understand that the arts are not mere decoration but also a tool for meaningful and significant communication, a process to engage community in dialogue.
The students created a "Thoughtful Warrior" necklace giving honor to the intentions they will set for their own personal "Acts of Peace Building" or the remembrance of a loved one/ancestor who is a hero to them.
Adult observers were also on hand to experience this very powerful workshop.
This young man born in Liberia selected beads that represent his culture and spoke of his intention for peace to not only occur in the USA, but his country. Christy took the time to walk the room during the beaded activity and provide the symbolic messages for all those beads selected to be strung.
Stars on one young student's necklace represented the act of her grandfather who protected some Jewish people in Germany during WWII.
Everyone has a different interpretation of their created work of art making.
These reflections were recorded on site and remain a part of the understanding of the power and meaning of this integrated, learning opportunity made available through the innovative teaching instruction of Ms. Davis.
This strand of over 500 beads represents the courage of a young child recovering from cancer to endure the many invasive procedures leading to wellness. Beads of Courage www.beadsofcourage.org is a nation wide program with Christy Puetz as the program developer going to all of these hospital sites throughout the USA and overseas.
One of Ms. Davisís students had heard of this program for children with cancer and created the bracelets to donate to them. What a powerful "Act of Peace Building" by this young woman!!
Photo narrative created by judy butzine
Cultural Arts Coalition Sept. 24, 2010
in recognition of the U.N. International Day of Peace Sept. 21, 2010