Bernard Zell Fifth Graders Give Voice to Endangered Animals
Gili Sherman, MS Art Teacher
Bernard Zell 5th Graders discussed how they can make a difference when it comes to the protection of endangered animals. They shared ideas about how art and the written word can alert and inform the public of urgent issues taking place with our environment. They discussed ways in which they could encourage people to take action.
One idea they discussed was to create posters to raise public awareness for these vulnerable animals.
Through a collaboration between art and science class, students learned about factors leading toward the extinction of certain species and about endangered animals. In science, they examined the top six causes of endangerment: habitat loss, over-harvesting, invasive or introduced species, climate change, pollution and disease. They learned that the most critically endangered animals often face multiple threats.
In art class, students further researched the challenges faced by animals due to climate change in general, along with humans’ encroachment on open spaces and overuse of resources among many other factors. Using their Chromebooks, they researched their chosen animal. They found photographs and drawings and practiced sketching them, while crafting a bold statement that would be spoken by the animal if it could communicate with the world. 
These statements and the beautiful imagery in oil pastels, grabs our attention on behalf of those animals lacking their own voice. The students hope that by creating more awareness, they can help save these animals. The 5th graders have been very engaged in this form of Tikkun Olam and we're so proud of their work!
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