Independence High students in Jamie Hollingshead’s “Design and Visual Communication” class are learning how to make art out of recycled materials as they create their own sheets of paper using old, shredded paper and water.

The students first begin by blending the scraps of paper and water together to create what they call a “paper smoothie”. Then, as they dump the pulp into a bucket of water, they use a screen with a square wooden frame to filter the water out and begin to create their paper. They dab any excess water with a dry cloth and remove the wooden frame as they begin to place one side of the rectangle into a dry cloth. After, they flip over to the other side of the paper and repeat. Once both sides are in the cloth they use a metal sheet as an iron board and begin ironing. Finally, they put the double-sided cloth into the press, a box within wooden boards, to be dried overnight.

This assignment fits one of the core standards of design which states, “Demonstrate an ability to recognize and utilize the elements of design: line, shape, value, form, texture, color, and space.”

Hollingshead loves watching her students work together and the students enjoyed the opportunity to participate in the “art of recycling” as they created their own pieces of homemade paper.

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