Fort Dodge school district purchases student art

Every year the Fort Dodge Community School District purchases three student works, one from the elementary level, one from the middle schools and one from the high school.

“Teachers choose students who excel in things like creativity, craftsmanship and technical skills,” Jillian Knutsen said.

The FDCSD board, at its regular meeting May 20, paid students for their works, which were professionally framed, and presented students with a plaque.

The award is a decades-old tradition for the district, having started in 1979.

From Cooper Elementary, Magdalena Pina-Hernandez, a kindergarten student, showed her artwork to the board. She was presented her award by art teacher Meg Beshey. The mixed media piece is titled, “My Colors.”

“It uses gel markers that made the colors turn up like magic on the paper, and then they had to use some crazy tablecloth,” Beshey said, to her student. “We had a lot of fun coloring and doodling, didn’t we?”

Hannah Beshey, an eighth-grade student from Phillips Middle School, showed her work, a colored pencil piece depicting the Beatles, titled, “Color de’ Beatles.” Beshey was given her award by her teacher Sarah Peters.

“Hannah is a natural artist who is always branching away from the original assignment,” Peters said. “The assignment I gave to the students was to imitate Roy Lichtenstein, and she said, ‘I want to do Andy Warhol.’ She wanted to do the Beatles, so I said go for it.”

The work sold to the school wasn’t the original, according to Peters.

“She had done one and I liked it so much I insisted she do another one,” Peters said. “I didn’t want to take her original one away from her, so this is the remake.”

Joanna Rosen, a junior at Fort Dodge Senior High, was awarded for her purchased work, a chalk pastel titled, “The Three Little Pigs.” Knutsen presented Rosen and her work to the school board.

“I had Joanna last trimester in drawing, and she is so absolutely fantastic,” Knutsen said. “You show her something once and she picks it up right away.”

Each student was paid $35 for their works, which will be displayed in the halls of the district’s administration building.