A couple of students from Murdoch MacKay Collegiate are hoping that a piece of functional art they made for their global issues class will make a big splash this summer.
Aspen Baker and Brianna McNeil are the pair who came up with Bubbles — a metal sculpture of a fish that will act as a receptacle for recyclables — as a project for their global issues class. Last week, Bubbles was delivered to the Oasis on Oasis Road, where the sculpture will find a new home on the beach.
"We’re really passionate about climate change and what’s happening to our planet," explained Baker, a Grade 11 student whose family has a campsite at the Oasis. "We wanted to do a project about pollution in the water and how to save it. That’s why we wanted to do a fish, to represent what aquatic life could be eating if you throw your recyclables in the water."
In global issues class, which teacher Kim Dudek explained is "activism-based," students research issues of the day, and come up with projects that could result in positive change.
This is a beautiful project. Hopefully it will be a catalyst for kids to think about the planet.
"This is a beautiful project," Dudek said of Baker and McNeil’s project. "Hopefully it will be a catalyst for kids to think about the planet."
Baker and McNeil were inspired by a design they found online, and scaled it down to something they could build in the metal shop at Murdoch MacKay.
"I think this could be really good for the Oasis," Baker said. "The people who work there go along the beach and pick up all the garbage. What we wanted to do was help them out a little bit."
McNeil, who graduated from Murdoch MacKay earlier this week after spending three years in the metal arts program, built the frame for the fish in class with the help of welding instructor Gerard Hoorne and fellow students Daniel Kister, Josef Weiss, Nathan Gusowski, and Dylan Arnold. When it came time to line the frame with chicken wire, and clear coat and paint the fins, Baker got involved as well.
"This was my first time in the metal program," Baker, who will return to Murdoch as a Grade 12 student in the fall, said. "It was really cool. Everyone here (metal shop) was so nice and helpful. I’d like to get into it more next year if I can."
"It’s pretty exciting when you have a student who’s not from our program come in," Hoorne said. "The students were very eager to lend a helping hand, to show their skill set and help make something awesome at the same time. When you do something different like this, it’s kind of fun. Then you’re thinking, what can we do next?"
For Dudek, the projects students take on in global issues provide an opportunity to take learning out of the classroom.
"Learning is so involved," she said. "It’s not just one subject, or it shouldn’t be."
Community journalist — The Herald
Sheldon Birnie is the community journalist for The Herald Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org Call him at 204-697-7112