ArtStream  Willow Springs Middle School ArtStream Journal

Willow Springs ArtStream Journal
by Sharon Lewis, Willow Springs ArtStream lead teacher

Exploring the creeks in Willow Springs

On the first day out, we discover our brave leader (artist Pat Hight, second from right) is undaunted by brush, poison ivy, barbed wire, vermin, any other obstacle that might come our way. She is fearless, and so are the students.

This photo was taken June 7, on our second day out. We began at the wooded area of our school grounds, which is also the home of our outdoor classroom. We spent a couple of days following the drainage area, which drains into the Eleven Point. Students cleaned up the creek while exploring. We found lots of artifacts such as a pottery shard, broken dishes, a skull, a couple of batteries, some tires, etc. We dragged out as much as we could carry.

An unusual formation created from the contents of a drainage pipe. The formation itself is composed of clay, but the water had an oily-like residue. Found in a dry creek area (which drains into the Eleven Point) in Willow Springs.

Close-up shot of drainage from pipe where the clay formation was found. We are going to ask the MDNR Water Quality people to investigate.

Excerpt from student nature journal: We went walking in the streambed in town. There is a tree in the way and ants are on the tree. We heard birds and saw a red bird. We found animal dens and ants on plants or grass. It is cooler in the creek. There's lots of moss on rocks. We found a big pipe, a horseshoe imbedded in a dead tree, and a tire. Found a dead raccoon. I felt really bad about the trash I saw.

Studying the riparian corridor

Compiling a complex food web that might be found along the Eleven Point River.

Sketching at the MDC Nature Center

Sketching the black bear and river otter in the exhibits

Students studied and sketched native Missouri plants at MDC. This is a Rattlesnake Master plant.

Official MDC frog, found in the pond along the
nature trail, has many companions and relatives!

Clay Day!

Under Pat Hight's supervision, students learned how to handle clay and constructed coiled pots. These were transformed into effigies representing the animals they have been studying.


The pots were later glazed and fired outside in raku kilns.


  Next >>  Field Trip to the Eleven Point River 

The development of content for ArtStream has been funded through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region VII, through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, has provided partial funding for this project under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act.

top of pageTop