Published on Thu., December 15, 2022

Bedford Hills "Garden of Wonder" light display at night

Fifth grade students at Bedford Hills Elementary combined different technologies and art techniques to create a “Garden of Wonder” now on display as a part of Lynchburg Parks and Recreation’s Celebration of Lights in Riverside Park.

The light display—with the theme of “Nature”— could only be made of plywood and paint, which made for an interesting challenge for students. They were up to the task, however, as they were able to utilize a number of innovative classroom technologies to create the design.

Caroline Arp, Librarian at Bedford Hills Elementary, brought the project to students and served as project manager for the light display. “We promote creation and design by fostering independent exploration and providing technologies, community connections, and a space for collaboration,” Mrs. Arp said. “Students quickly connected to our garden at Bedford Hills, and decided to take pictures of items during harvest season and illustrate them. Students were able to use 3D software, the Procreate drawing app on the iPads, or paper and pencil to design their ideas for the display.”

When classes came up with the idea of a garden with silhouettes of items found in the Bedford Hills Garden, students were able to use their creativity and communication skills to work collaboratively using the Osmo Masterpiece app to refine their designs.

The Bedford Hills Elementary PTO sponsored the project, and with a combination of purchased and donated materials, construction began. Parent and staff volunteers assisted with the cutting, construction, and installation of the display, while fifth grade students painted and added details to the project.

Collage of process for creating light display

Fifth grade student Millie said, “There was a lot of redesigning and hard work, but in the end it was all worth it!”

Wrynn, another fifth grade student added, “It was teamwork, a lot of designing, but in the end it was so worth it to see it shine.”

The Bedford Hills Elementary light display can be seen as a part of Lynchburg Parks and Recreation’s Celebration of Lights in Riverside Park through January 1, 2023.

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