Every Wednesday, Malden Teen Center hosts an Art Day which many students from Malden High School enjoy attending.

Instagram flyer on Art Day. Taken from "maldenteencenter" on Instagram.

“Art Day is a day where we explore various different art projects. Kathy, our coordinator, is very creative and she likes a lot of woodworking and things like that. She and I fall into the same tune with that. We kind of fall in tune with that where we just try different crafty projects so art day is a mixture of random projects that we do and that we want the kids to experience as well. We range from painting to woodburning, we did some twine stars with Modge Podge, so a few different things. Today we’re doing snowglobes,” Sheena LaPia-Pappas, the creator of the club explained.

The idea for Art Day came about during COVID. Since they had a lot of time and they were still open, they did a lot of art outdoors like painting the community bridges. That’s when doing different crafts stuck for them. They began trying more forms of art, like woodburning and more.

“It’s never been an established program until recently. We’re still looking for more things to do during the program, but it’s been an idea that’s built up since the start of COVID and evolved over time,” LaPia-Pappas continued. 

The biggest challenge they’ve had to go through has been keeping up with everyone’s interests in art and what they enjoy doing. Many people like some things and others don’t, so trying to please everyone while also making an event that’s easy to get supplies for is something that has been a bit challenging for them. “Some people will come to me and ask me if we can do something, and I see if we can get the stuff or if we have it already so we can try it,” LaPia-Pappas said.

On Wednesday, December 13th, MTEC hosted a snow globe event where students could come in and create their own snow globes for the holidays. A handful of students showed up and were excited to make their own festive snow globes.

“I saw them advertising it at lunch, and I come here sometimes so I thought it would be cool and I wanted to make a snow globe,” Jack Colantuoni, a student who attended said. 

When everyone came in, a table filled with all of the art supplies they needed was waiting for them. They began grabbing what they needed right away and took a seat so that they could start hot-gluing their pieces together.

Photo of art supplies. HASET TESFAW

“I’m really enjoying this activity, I actually didn’t think I’d have this much joy with using a glue gun but it was really fun. Right now I’m making one to give to my mom, so having something to give to others or even something to keep for yourself is really fun,” Colantuoni proceeded.

“I thought it was really interesting and it also helps the community and makes it more positive in a way,” Canna Carvalho, another student who attended stated.

Students crafting snow globes. HASET TESFAW

“The overall goal is to show that anyone can be creative and almost anything can be used as a piece of art. We just did some wooden trees, the staff was testing out some pieces of old fencing, so we cut it and stuck it together as a tree. We hope to incorporate more of that, like, you can take old pieces of wood that most people think are trash and repurpose them into art. Or just some twine and Modge Podge and make it into stars or ornaments, you can do anything. The goal is to teach people that anything could be an art project and anyone could do it,” LaPia-Pappas explained.

LaPia-Pappas also made sure to emphasize that she is “not a professional art teacher” and that she took art classes when she was at Malden High School but does not have any further education in art. “It’s just a fun hobby. I just want to show kids that it can be a fun hobby for them too.” 

“I want [art day] to grow and I want more people to see that art is not just your typical Bob Ross paintings and that there are quite a few different things that you can do,” LaPia-Pappas finished.

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