Love’s Creative SPARKS! Recipients 2011
Laenie Fletcher, Overall Grand Prize Winner
Laenie is a senior at Edmond Memorial High School, Edmond. She submitted an essay titled Paint! Oklahoma, discussing how the color of a room impacts the attitudes and minds of our Oklahoma students. She proposed a new painting project that would allow younger children and older children to interact with each other through paint. Students would paint classrooms bringing their imagination and creative ideas to life. In Laenie’s words, “This painting project has the potential to inspire students to imagine and implement creative ideas; this is essentially a project with no boundaries.”
Ashlyn Brown, Grand Prize Winner (7-12)
Ashlyn is in 8th grade at Oakdale Middle School, Edmond. She submitted an essay entitled “Get Smart, Oklahoma!” She proposed that to enhance learning and help Oklahoma’s environment, schools need to invest in “Smartdesks.” A Smartdesk is a Smartboard built into a student’s desk. Ashlyn recognizes that this invention would be costly for Oklahoma, but the end rewards would be great. Paper would not be relied on as often and the students would have all the tools needed at their fingertips or at the end of a marker. She states, “Smartdesks might also get the kids more interested in school because they would not be using only a pencil and paper, but so much more.”
Jace Taggart, Grand Prize Winner (K-6)
Jace is in 6th grade at Angie Debo Elementary, Edmond. He submitted an essay entitled “School at Home,” discussing a project called “The Subject Supervisor.” The Subject Supervisor is a black box with a three-dimensional hologram who would teach students at their home. It would also contain music, games, thousands of apps, and would resemble a phone. Jace concluded that kids do not enjoy going to school but they would enjoy studying at their own pace. However, for those kids who do not like to study, he installed an alarm that would let the parents know the student is neglecting their work. In Jace’s words, “I believe Oklahoma is a creative state and that my creative spark will benefit teachers, students, parents, our community, and our great state.”
Morgan Smith, 2nd Place Award
Morgan, who graduated from Yukon High School in 2011, submitted an essay entitled “Talent in Session,” discussing how monthly City Council meetings should be updated. She proposed to incorporate a city-wide talent show for the community to engage in the civil problems. This would eliminate the weariness of the meetings and add a creative outlet for the community. “Adding a community talent show to the monthly city council meetings would not only publicize the meetings, giving more citizens knowledge of an outlet through which they can address and correct their problems, but it would also create a fun and family friendly way for everyone to come together, share their talents, and support each other,” Morgan Smith.
William Shorow, 3rd Place Award
William is in 6th grade at Northern Hills Elementary, Edmond. He submitted a painting with a summary explaining his entry, called “Keep Oklahoma Growing.” He painted a character from Caravaggio’s painting, William’s favorite artist, The Calling of Saint Matthew. William focused on the boy in the center of the painting, incorporating his own idea. Using only four tubes of paint and mixing the rest to achieve the colors needed, he painted the word Oklahoma coming out of the boy’s head, increasing in size as it flows further away. William explains, “I do not have one single idea, but I believe that education is the spark that ignites the Oklahoma spirit of creativity.”
Certificates of Merit:
Kayla Sharp, 1st Place (9-12)
Kayla is in 12th grade at Yukon High School, Yukon. She submitted an essay entitled “Let’s Get Creative with our Playgrounds,” addressing plastic waste. Kayla proposed the idea to use recycled plastic to build playgrounds instead of metal and new plastic materials. She explains that this would save our government money, cut down on the waste of plastic, and would help spark creative ideas in children. This project would allow the students to design their own playgrounds. Kayla also explains that since the recycled bottles are plastic, the equipment would act as a dry-erase board, allowing the children to color on them.
Sasha Lainee’ Newkirk, 2nd Place (9-12)
Sasha, now graduated from Union High School, Tulsa in 2011, submitted an essay entitled “Oklahoma Education TOP Priority.” In her essay, Sasha explains the need for Oklahoma to bring attention to and bring back certain organizations that are striving to enhance education in the public schools. She uses examples of organizations such as Great Expectations, A+ Schools, Literacy First, the National Board Certified Teachers, the Education Leadership of Oklahoma, and the FIRST Robotics Team. Sasha says that “instead of reinventing the wheel let’s support the programs that work and continue to build programs that inspire students to reach the goals they set for themselves. Give the teachers and educators of Oklahoma a chance to open the mind of a child through creative innovative learning styles.”
Sierra Watts, 3rd Place (9-12)
Sierra is in 12th grade at Yukon High School. She submitted an essay entitled “Supporting the Future.” She proposes that schools provide teenage support groups for various obstacles, such as drinking, using drugs, safe sex, babysitting, or having a job in school. Sierra explains that these support groups would be extremely beneficial because the students could go to these mentors before they actually go through with taking a drink or having an abortion, decreasing student ‘mistakes’ in Oklahoma. She says, “Having a support group that connects people that made a mistake and people that are in the process of making a mistake will keep Oklahoma a great place to be.”
Landon Wilguess, 1st Place (6-8)
Landon is in 8th grade at Oakdale Middle School, Edmond. He submitted an essay entitled “Oklahoma Thrives When We All Work Together,” proposing that schools and businesses work together to fundraise for an elevated electric tram system. He explains that the tram would help decrease pollution, encourage people to walk more, and would allow children a place to study while traveling to school. Landon proposes that the businesses who want to be involved would match what the schools raise, which would allow the business to ‘own’ their tram stop. The tram would be connected to all of the Oklahoma City Metro area, to Tulsa, and the surrounding larger cities. There would also be walls that children could decorate at the tram stops, allowing a creative outlet for students as they wait. Landon also says that Oklahoma City should consider widening and expanding the canal that runs through Bricktown providing a way for people to go more places. “This idea would make it easier to get around Oklahoma and would get our schools and business people working together to raise money to make Oklahoma even better,” Landon Wilguess.
Alli Evans, 2nd Place (6-8)
Allie is in 8th grade at Oakdale Middle School, Edmond. She submitted an essay entitled “What’s the Big Deal?,” explaining her thoughts on the importance of students learning math and science in school to prepare them for the ‘real world.’ Allie uses examples such as bringing guest lectures from outside businesses into the classroom to teach the kids about how jobs use math and science as the backbone of their work. Field trips, “shadowing” a worker, and special projects – essays, creating posters, searching the internet – are other ways that would benefit the learning curve of the students. Allie says that “students need to know why they are learning what they are learning in school. Doing these things and teaching kids why their future is important will make Oklahoma more competitive with other communities and states around the world.”
Omar Gillan, 3rd Place (3-5)
Omar is in 6th grade at Angie Debo Elementary, Edmond. He submitted an essay entitled “Soft but Dribble Proof Court” or “SBDPC.” Omar proposes a new soft court that will still allow sports balls to be dribbled. He explains that the court will be for sports education and the safety of the students, decreasing the number of injuries. Omar uses a quote by James Russell Lowell to express his creative thought of reinventing the court – “Creativity is not finding of a thing, but the making something out of it after it is found.”
Yadin Joseph, 1st Place (3-5)
Yadin is in 6th grade at Angie Debo Elementary, Edmond. He submitted an essay entitled “Yadin’s Educational Arcade,” the combination of arcade games and educational games. The idea is for a student to take a worksheet, drop it in a slot on the arcade (free of charge) and have a fun experience of learning. In Yadin’s own words, “It takes worksheets to the next level.” He explains that this arcade will improve students’ grades, decrease the teachers’ grading load, ease the minds of parents, and he guarantees this idea will make school 60% more fun.
Porter Jones, 2nd Place (3-5)
Porter is in 6th grade at Northern Hills Elementary.
Bryson Deloney, 3rd Place (3-5)
Bryson is in 5th grade at Will Rogers Elementary, Oklahoma City. He submitted an essay entitled “The Three R’s.” He explains his interest in recycling and how he took action. He started by passing out flyers in his family’s apartment complex on the importance of recycling. From September 29th to October 20th, 2011, Bryson then picked up sorted trash of paper, plastic, and cans from the residence participating. At the end of the month, he was able to take the collected materials to the specific sites. Bryson explains that anyone can recycle to keep Oklahoma clean.
Aubrey Robichaux, 1st Place (K-2)
Aubrey is in 1st grade at Russell Dougherty, Edmond. She submitted a watercolor and crayon artwork, shown below. Aubrey used her creativity and imagination to create a beautiful butterfly with the colors of the rainbow, allowing the wax from the crayons to create a barrier between the watercolors.
Kyle Archer, 2nd Place (K-2)
Kyle is in 3rd grade at Riverside Public School, El Reno. He submitted a drawing about making the world a happier place by picking up trash. In a description of his artwork, Kyle says that he can pick up cans and earn money for his school.
Avery Anderson, 3rd Place (K-2)
Avery is in 3rd grade at Wynnewood Central Elementary, Wynnewood. She submitted a collage/crayon drawing depicting a home and addresses the act of recycling with her colorful trashcan.