Sparks Elementary honored at Festival of Trees


A tree created by Grade 4 students from Sparks Elementary School and displayed as part of the Kennedy Krieger Institute’s Festival of Trees won honors for its design and shared an important message about kindness. On Friday, November 23, 2012, the tree won a first place award and received a blue ribbon for its design at the Festival of Trees, held in the Cow Palace at the Maryland State Fairgrounds.

Under the direction of Sparks Elementary faculty and staff members Stephanie Chaney, Marissa Chang, and Tammy Kincaid, the students brainstormed a theme of “Sparks Sharks Stand Together Against Bullying.” To address this theme, the students designed gingerbread figures with colorful fabrics and paper to reflect their own appearances. The students then joined their gingerbread figures at the hands to create a “kindness chain.” The chain, which wraps around the tree, also includes words such as “caring” and “sharing” between sets of linked gingerbread figures.

An annual tradition since 1990, the Festival of Trees raises funds for donation to the Krieger Institute, which provides medical attention and assistance to children and adolescents suffering from brain- and spinal cord-related health conditions.


Story and photos submitted by Charles Ament, Assistant Principal, Sparks Elementary School. Story edited by Blake Lubinski, intern in the BCPS Office of Communications and a senior at Towson High School.
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