S.H.A.R.E., art classes take joint field trip to Chicago


Mrs. Jane Schmitz

students (left) enjoy time at Shedd Aquarium while art students (right) explore the Art Institute of Chicago.

Karin Juhl

students (left) enjoy time at Shedd Aquarium while art students (right) explore the Art Institute of Chicago. (Mr. Danny Mallmann)
students (left) enjoy time at Shedd Aquarium while art students (right) explore the Art Institute of Chicago.
(Mrs. Jane Schmitz)

S.H.A.R.E. (Students Helping, Accepting, Relating, and Empowering others to succeed) and art students were able to take a joint field trip to Chicago, one of the first field trips out-of-state since the pandemic, on December 9.

The art students went with CHS art teacher Mrs. Jane Schmitz and four chaperones to the Art Institute of Chicago.

The students had two hours to look through exhibits and were able to view works from famous artists such as Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, Georges Seurat and Georgia O’Keeffe. Students saw a variety of pieces spanning across the impressionistic, romantic and modern art periods.

“Seeing a work of art in person helps recognize the time, energy and commitment invested by the artist,” Mrs. Schmitz said. “The arts are an important part of a well-rounded education.

While the art students were at the museum, the S.H.A.R.E. class, along with special education teachers Mr. Danny Mallmann and Ms. Tori Zipperer, visited Shedd Aquarium.

S.H.A.R.E. student and senior Jessica Mier said, “I got to see a lot of fish. Also, the sea snakes were pretty cool.” Meier said it was her first time visiting an aquarium.

Before COVID-19, Mr. Luke Johnson, a district speech and language specialist, had the idea for the field trip to Shedd Aquarium and was awarded a grant for the trip. He wanted to help his students practice their speech in a real-world setting as well as have a great experience visiting a new place.

Then, earlier this year, Mr. Mallmann asked Mrs. Schmitz if she would be able to drive the bus as she has her commercial driver’s license and helps drive buses sometimes. While Mrs. Schmitz said she wasn’t comfortable driving a bus in downtown Chicago traffic, sharing the expense of a coach bus between the S.H.A.R.E. and art classes was able to significantly lower the cost for everyone.

As part of the art students’ assignment at the museum, each student was asked to take a picture of the piece that most “spoke” to them, and the next week, they wrote a short paper on what the piece means to them.

Senior Vanila Aubry chose to write their paper on Young Woman Sewing, by PierreAuguste Renoir. “The artwork was really pretty,” Aubry said. “It was in a room with many other amazing artwork, but this was the one that caught my attention.”

Mrs. Schmitz stated that she hopes to continue taking this trip with her art students about once every four years.