Woodland Middle School launches new art and craft clubs for students


Woodland Middle School introduced two new afterschool clubs last month to provide students with a way to engage in lessons or activities they may not otherwise have an opportunity to take part in during the school day.

The school launched the art club and craft club in November, stated a news release from the district. 

Woodland Middle School art teacher Clarissa Rinehart runs the art club, which allows students to take on self-directed projects that use a variety of media from colored pencils, clay, watercolor and acrylic paints. Club members can choose to create projects suggested by Rinehart or can pursue their own interests, stated the release. 

The craft club, which is run by paraeducators Tammy Hall and Megan Orr, provides more directed sessions focused on the development of specific projects. Students in the club recently worked on small winter sleighs which they were able to decorate however they wanted. 

Hall and Orr started the craft club to provide students with the chance to find some inspiration. 

“In addition to projects involving traditional types of art like painting or drawing, the craft club also expands the types of projects to include holiday cookie decorating, tie-dying T-shirts, creating covers for journals, making scrapbooks, and many more,” stated the release. 

While the clubs are new, the student response has been positive and both clubs are full. The clubs, according to the district, have attracted a diverse group of students. 

“In addition to having students from all four of the grade levels we serve (fifth through eighth), we also have a significant number of students from our Diverse Support Program (DSP) taking part in the clubs,” Rinehart stated in the release. “Our school team really prioritized offering these special students the opportunity to join in since some cannot participate in more traditional extracurricular activities like athletics.”

Research shows extracurricular activities can improve a student’s performance by providing motivation to attend school and do well, since low grades can prevent students from participating in afterschool activities. Students also have the opportunity to learn new skills through the offerings. 

“Not all of our students have the availability in their schedules to take art class during the school day, so these clubs give them the opportunity to take part,” Rinehart stated in the release. “Additionally, it’s nice to provide kids with a safe place after school where they can spend time actually getting to be kids.”

Eighth grader John Souders took an art class last year. While Souders enjoyed it, he didn’t have time to take another class this year so he joined the afterschool club instead. 

“I really enjoy painting, working with clay, and drawing,” Souders said. “I really enjoy the process of creating my art as much as I enjoy the end product. Art is my favorite subject.”

To learn more about the art and craft clubs at Woodland Middle School, Clarissa Rinehart at rineharc@woodlandschools.org, email Tammy Hall at hallt@woodlandschools.org, or Megan Orr at orrm@woodland schools.org.

The clubs have received support from the Woodland community through donations.