ABS Thursday Notes- March 24, 2022

Published for the Arts Based School Community

March 24, 2022

How We Do It and Why

By Mary Siebert

“Photographs open doors into the past, but they also allow a look into the future.”

  • Sally Mann

The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting sponsors independent journalists covering under-reported global issues. The organization engages students in learning about both the topics and the journalists. For several years, our 8th grade students have worked with local guest artist Diana Greene in conjunction with the Pulitzer Center, on a portrait project tilted Traces of Myself

Students study the photography of Ms. Greene, and then the work of Pulitzer Center artist and photojournalist Daniella Zalcman and her blended photo techniques. In particular, they are introduced to Zalcman’s collection: Signs of Your Identity, a moving representation of Indigenous People of Canada, who recall their childhood years when they were forced to leave their families and live at schools intended to bring about assimilation into Canadian culture. Through this study, students learn about both the history of Indigenous People and new techniques for the art of portraiture. 

In the photos representing these Indigenous people, Ms. Zalcman superimposes, over a photo of the individual, additional photos of places and objects that represent who the subjects of the photos were, and who they have become. 

To document who they are, and what influences ABS has had on them, students work with partners to create a formal self-portrait, beginning with a photograph of themselves. They then take photos of favorite places and objects around the ABS campus, and they learn how to superimpose and digitally blend these photos artfully over and within their portrait.

These classes are well underway, and Ms. Greene has been enjoying working with the 8th graders, reporting that she could “hear a pin drop” during her first classes. The intriguing and enchanting final pieces will be displayed at 8th grade graduation; a keepsake for the students and their families.

7th Grade Performs Brundibar Tonight!

7th Graders will perform the opera Brundibar, by Hans Krasa, tonight at 7:00. The performance will be at the First Presbyterian Worship Center, 200 N. Cherry Street, and will last about 30 minutes. Admission is free, but donations to help cover the cost of production are greatly appreciated. Please stay to help us load the sets and costumes back onto the truck, and meet us at ABS to move them back into the building. Students should arrive at the theater at 6:00.

Builders Club is Back!

Does your child want to make a difference in our community and the world? Your child is invited to join the Builders Club program at the Arts Based School. Builders Club is a service organization and a member of the Kiwanis Family, which sponsors our club. Builders Club provides the opportunity to develop self-esteem, leadership skills, and respect for others. Activities include community service projects that impact our school, our city, and our global community.

For the 2021-2022 school year, we are opening the club to all school students 5th-8th grade. As we are just getting restarted, we will be waving the $3.00 fee for this year. 

Builders Club meets on Friday mornings from 7:45-8:15 in the art room, starting April 1st. Look for permission slips coming home soon if your student is interested.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email Elizabeth Gledhill or Lee Ann Farrell.

Morning Routine Change

For the students in the MLK building, we have returned to our normal morning procedures. Students arriving between 7:45-8:00 will gather in the cafeteria with Mrs. Hollis. These extra 15 minutes allow teachers additional time to prepare for their students. At 8:00 students are dismissed to their classrooms. As always, students should arrive by 8:10 so they have time to get to their classroom by 8:15. Students who are not in class at 8:15 are marked tardy.

Want to be the Assistant Principal?

We’re bringing back an old tradition! Time to purchase your raffle tickets to give your child a chance to be Assistant Principal of the Day! Yes, your child (of any grade level) can serve as Principal Hollis' Assistant for an entire day! Assistant Principals have their own desk, name tag, and list of "Principal Duties" for the day! Simply stop by either front office and purchase your raffle tickets today ($1/ticket, $5 for 6 tickets). You may also purchase tickets online, and we will fill out the physical tickets for you in our front office. All proceeds from the raffle support our Hospitality fund and allow us to do special things for our staff throughout the year.


Parent Satisfaction Survey-One week left

Yes, that's you! We want to know what you think! Please follow the link ArtsBasedSchoolsurvey to a 10-question online survey about our school. Your responses are completely anonymous and help us determine what's working well and what needs more work! Please take a few minutes to complete and submit. Thank you!

COVID reporting

With the NC DHHS/Strong Schools Toolkit recommendation to move away from individual contact tracing, notifications of positive cases will now be communicated via the ABS COVID Report Dashboard that can be accessed here.  

If your student develops any potential COVID related symptoms, please keep them at home and notify the school nurse, Stephanie Smith for next steps.  

ABS Summer Camp 2022 - Registration is OPEN.

We are so excited about the opportunity to spend time with your child(ren) this summer in ABS Summer Camps! Our summer camps aim to spark curiosity, nurture friendships, and enable playful exploration. Our summer programming is an extension of the ABS philosophy of joyful learning through the arts, and we are committed to providing a fun, enriched, and diverse experience. More information, including a registration link, are below. Some camps are nearly full.

Summer camp dates, teachers, and descriptions


Frequently Asked Questions


Summer Camp Registration

Daily Lunch Options Begin April 4: Register Today

In an effort to provide expanded daily lunch options for our families, we're launching a new online lunch ordering system (MyHotLunchbox) on a trial basis. Families will be able to order lunch for their student(s) Monday through Thursday if you choose. Friday will continue to be our standard Pizza Friday. We have requested to work with locally-owned restaurants if possible, but for now, our lunch vendors are:

  • Monday: Zaxby's
  • Tuesday: Jason's Deli
  • Wednesday: Moe's Southwest
  • Thursday: Firehouse Subs

We'll still do Pizza Friday with Papa John's to finish this school year.

If you would like to order lunch you will need to set up an account with MyHotLunchbox. Menus and prices are available to view within the system.

Once you have established your account, you can add profiles for siblings, even if they are in different buildings—you do not need a separate account.

Ordering will open on March 21, and our first delivery will begin on April 4.

Volunteers Needed!

Friday Sing Set-Up

A crew is needed to help set up for our first in-person Friday Sing (for K-4 students) in two years! Volunteers meet Ms. Siebert inside the 7th Street entrance at 1:00 on April 1st. You will help set up sound system and other equipment, and will assist with transporting African drums and putting things away after the show at 2:15. No heavy lifting required. Please sign up here. Thank you!

Garden Crew!

We have rescheduled our Garden Work Day for this coming Sunday, March 27, from 2-4pm. Bring your gardening gloves and tools, and please sign up here. You are welcome to bring your kids, but there is no formal childcare provided—so you will be responsible for their well-being. Thank you! We’ll see you there!!

Also, if you would like to join parent volunteer and ecological designer Kristen Haaf for some spring gardening, she spends most weekday afternoons from 2:45-3:45 tending our gardens. If you think you might join her, please send her an email to let her know!