School | News&Notes: Releasing the artist within
Within the confines of a humble Tahoe Lake Elementary School classroom, students are regularly captivated by Kimball Iverson who is part storyteller, part magician and, above all, a gifted art instructor.Kids are capable of much more than we think, Iverson says. So many kids think artistic talent is something you have or you dont; thats just not true. There are so many tricks and simple tools that can add artistic elements, such as shadow and depth. Four years ago, parent volunteer Iverson helped the elementary school resurrect the languishing curriculum portfolios of an art docent program that had been spearheaded a decade before. Measure A funds helped fund the original educational collateral, but it was Iverson who breathed new life into the program when her young son, Cole, started at the school.Later, the school received a $1,100 grant from the Placer County District 5 Benefit Fund for an In School Art Enrichment Program, administered by Iverson and augmented by scores of in-class parent volunteers. Iverson, with the help of the PTO, branched out last year by offering an after-school art program that has been met with great enthusiasm.Tahoe Lake Elementary School parent Theresa Anderson has served as volunteer art docent in several different classrooms under Iversons tutelage. I think its so important for the students to understand art is a process, notes the mother of three children. Artists dont just sit down and create a masterpiece, there are many steps that lead up to thatjust like in writing.Anderson says Iverson is unfailingly generous with her time and is committed to helping the in-class program succeed. Her nine-year-old son Aidan is a devotee of Iversons after school program.He wasnt really finding himself in sports, but he likes working with his hands and creating, Anderson adds. Tahoe Lake Elementary School alum Grace Lindemann, 11, shares Aidan Andersons passion for Iversons art classes. Lindemann says with each new art technique, Iverson tells an interesting story about an artists life. It was so cool because she taught us things we didnt think we could do, she says while holding up a realistic looking sketch of an arm and hand. At the end of the year she told me I hope you will continue to sketch what you see and draw what you imagine.Iverson is pleased by such accolades, but remains reticent to take full credit.The kids already have it in them, Im just supplying direction and the right tools.