Hamilton Avenue Students Showcase Results of Museum Partnership

Hamilton Magnet School junior docents
Students Become Junior Docents and Create Impressive Artwork at the Greenwich Historical Society

Cos Cob, CT, June 24, 2016–On June 7, as the culmination of a yearlong museum-school partnership, students from Hamilton Avenue Magnet School mounted an exhibition at the Greenwich Historical Society to showcase what they learned during field trips to Bush-Holley Historic Site. Students from all grades visit the site during the school year, with third-, fourth- and fifth-grade classes focusing on the history and art collections in Bush-Holley House. Fourth-grade artists proudly displayed dazzling self-portraits painted in response to the portraits they studied during their visit, while third graders created class quilts pieced with panels created by each student depicting scenes remembered from class trips.

Having visited the site for several years in a row, fifth graders seemed right at home at Bush-Holley House, and some volunteered to train after school to become junior docents so they could lead tours for younger students, parents, siblings and other VIPs. Commenting on his junior docent experience, Amedeo Furano said, “When I was smaller and I would come for school field trips, I would see the fifth graders talking. I said to myself, I want to do this!” Learning to speak in front of others was a theme that ran throughout each junior docent’s description of his or her experience. Said Christina Brunetti, “It’s very interesting to learn about all the people that lived in this house and the artwork…when I get older and I have to be in front of other people, I’ll know how to do it.”

As part of the museum-school partnership, the Historical Society also arranges for artists and educators to conduct classroom workshops at Hamilton Avenue to further explore topics touched upon during site visits. The program, which has been in place for eight years, exposes children to the enjoyment and creation of art, while building a foundation for lifelong learning and a connection with local history. It is supported in part by a grant from Fairfield County Community, which provides funds for arts and cultural organizations that connect residents more deeply with their communities.

All the junior docents agreed that they enjoyed the opportunity to delve into greater detail about the people, artworks and stories of Bush-Holley House. Charles Miranda, who led sessions in artist Elmer MacRae’s studio, noted, “It’s a new experience for me. It’s fun to do this with my friends and to be learning at the same time.”

Contact Information:
Barbara Bishop, Marketing & Communications Director