8th Grade Makes Art with Science

For the past three months, Ms. Schibuk’s 8th grade science class has been studying weather and climate. Over the last month, they’ve focused on the causes, mechanisms, and consequences of climate change. The students have talked a lot about public awareness and interest in climate change issues, and how people (specifically young people) need to take ownership of these issues.

Ms. Schibuk’s class has also been using art and music to interpret what they’re learning about our changing planet. Last month, the students worked hard to compose original music inspired by the data they’re studying, as well as make their own maps. This month, they’re using sculpture to take their studies to the next level. The middle schoolers are working in teams to make their own sculptures that are physical representations of sets of data about climate change. From rising temperatures to reduced glacier mass, they’re getting creative about how to interpret science through art!

On April 6, thanks to a grant from the Opportunity Fund, renowned local artist Nathalie Miebach came to work with the 8th grade class, to give them feedback and help move their projects forward.
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Nathalie is known for her intricate, complex, and visually arresting sculptures that are themselves physical translations of scientific data. After listening to the teams describe their artistic vision, the data they want to use, and their plan for executing their sculpture, she helped the students think more deeply and specifically about how to visualize and display their data.

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On April 10, the 8th graders were hard at work making their 3D sculptures. Some students were making baskets and working with clay to represent data about land mass…

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…while others used tarp, paint, and cardboard for their project on rising sea levels.
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One student, Dayana, was inspired by the previous assignment of composing music with data sets, and was working on composing a longer piece, using temperature data from the entire 20th century.
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Throughout this process, the students are thinking about how to use art as a vehicle for communicating their learning to the public. We are so excited to see how all of these students’ 3D visualizations and data representations turn out!
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