Harvey, 2nd grade student at Bulli Public School in Bulli, Australia.
HundrED shortlisted this innovation
Mail Art + Pen Friend = Dear You
What we do?
Dear You creates opportunities for students, teachers, professional artists all around the world to get to know oneself and each other through making and sharing art. The idea of Dear You is to create process-based art and make new friends living in all corners of the world. All Dear You participating schools are organized to have a Dear You friend in another country. During these workshops the children create their monthly art projects, which are then mailed to their Dear You friends abroad. Every month a Dear You workshop leader goes to the school to make monthly art project. Dear You workshop leaders work with the classroom teacher so that the methods are shared and that the school can continue Dear You independently the following year.
The range of projects include environmental art, book-making, installations, collective drawings and scientific experiments. These project allow for experiential learning and encourage the children to explore and be inquisitive. Through making art, collectively discussing their artworks in the class, carefully packaging them to share with their friends abroad, the young artists proudly present their heritage. At the end of the exchange the works are collected to create an exhibition in the school and online. The whole school benefits from the artistic exchange as the artworks received from other countries are displayed in the school for everybody to enjoy.
Why we do it?
Dialogue, exchange, and having skills to honestly express oneself will create more understanding and peace within ourselves and each other. This project is inclusive to all teachers, students and artists. Ultimately, this project reaches creatives of all ages all over the world. Dear You provides creative tools for promoting understanding and multicultural exchange, that can be then used by educators and applied in their classrooms. It provides an opportunity for artists and educators to create international connections. The main benefactors of Dear You project are, of course, the children. Through engaging with their peers across the globe, young people learn about other cultures, not only in another country but within their own group, too!
Every voice should be heard and Dear You creates a safer space for listening and sharing.