JFK students honored for book illustrations

e-Connections Post John F. Kennedy
JFK Students:
Back Row - Andrew Leung, Jose Aguirre, Kaylan Charles, Mirla Chavarria, Branden Sen, Samantha Vue, Malachi (Mickey) Bermudez
Front Row - Brandon Lee, Michael Hue, Sean Tokuno-Hernandez, Riley Lopez,  Jasmin Garcia

Students from John F. Kennedy High School’s Visual Communications class were recently honored for their illustration work on a children’s storybook.

In a contest hosted by the California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom, young elementary school authors were tasked with writing a story inspired by agriculture. Eight winners were selected from thousands of submissions by young authors.

High school students from art programs in Modesto, Sacramento, Elk Grove and Woodland were then invited to illustrate the winning entries.The authors and illustrators of the finished anthology were honored on March 20 at a ceremony held in the Governor’s Council Room at the state Capitol.

The students in the Visual Communications class at JFK were excited to bring some of these stories to life through digital illustrations. It was the first time the talented group of students completed a project that required them to interpret someone else’s words and develop illustrations to match the author’s ideas.

The JFK students selected one person as the project lead and then identified each student’s artistic strength. Every illustration was a team effort and students worked on specific details that showcased their skill on each scene, keeping consistency throughout the story. One of the illustrations contained a red barn that so inspired the judges that they decided to use it on the cover of the anthology.

“This is the relevant, real-world experience that is afforded through Career Technical Education (CTE) programs that are designed to bring authentic work-based learning activities directly into the classroom,” said Joseph Stymeist, CTE coordinator for the district. “It’s inspiring to see the Linked Learning approach of academic rigor, challenging technical courses, work-based learning opportunities and wrap-around student support come alive in the classroom and resonate with our students.”

JFK teacher, Kathleen Sailer said, “I’m very proud of the way the Visual Communications students worked together on the illustrations. They collaborated so smoothly that the glitches that come along were just that, little glitches, and consensus was natural to the creative process. Besides being very professional in their approach, they also had a lot of fun!”