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By Tirane' Harrington, proud AmeriCorps member serving at Celerity Crestworth. 

In preparation for Mardi Gras break, Crestworth AmeriCorps members Briana Thorn and Kelci Morales planned an event called “Mardi Gras Art Day”. For Mardi Gras Art Day, they presented the students with a brief history lesson and facilitated a mask decorating class. They taught students a lesson that covered when Mardi Gras began, the meaning behind the name, and how different cities celebrate Mardi Gras. This event allowed the students to have a better understanding and deeper connection to Louisiana and its unique culture and history. Students also gained the confidence to explain Louisiana culture to people who are not from Louisiana. Having an art-filled event benefitted Celerity Crestworth because it allowed the students to grow outside of academics. Incorporating art into the students learning has inspired and encouraged their creativity because it challenged them to think outside of the box. Overall, participation in Mardi Gras Art Day has helped connect students to their culture and community as it gave them an opportunity to see things from different perspectives and offered them an outlet to express themselves.

Overall the Mardi Gras Art Day went well. The kids enjoyed it and were very engaged. - Kelci Morales

The downside was that our kids were a little hectic because they are not used to having down time and opportunities to engage in things like this.

Overall Mardi Gras Art Day was a success; however, we needed more manpower to help with the kids. - Briana Thorn

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