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Positively LEX 18: Student art makes a paw-sitive difference

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Posted at 6:45 AM, Oct 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-21 09:55:59-04

WOODFORD COUNTY, Ky. (LEX18) — Leah McAllister's art class at Southside Elementary School is a place where imaginations run wild. Elementary students of all ages get to create and she loves to see it.

"The students know that this is their studio, they are the artists, and I am just here to help them along in their creative journey," McAllister said.

Lately though, things have gone to the dogs...and cats and...

"The guinea pig or the rabbit, we've had all kinds of wonderful animals that we've been able to help," McAllister chuckled.

This year, her class has partnered with the Woodford County Humane Society. They are drawing pictures to promote animals up for adoption, and it is a hit.

"Do I like art class? I adore art class! It's my favorite in the whole wide world," said 5th grader Violet Long.

Each week, the students get introduced to a new animal, learn a little about them and then create a portrait. The children get to sharpen their skills and learn the importance of giving back.

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McAllister said, "It has grown into something more than what I thought it would be, and it has exceeded my expectations."

Violet Long added, "They give us the little personality things and then you read them and you kind of get an idea of what they act like, how much energy they have, if they're lovey-dovey, if they don't like other animals so you can put that into your drawing."

The drawings are taken to the humane society where they bring big smiles to the workers and animals alike, but the biggest smiles come when they learn their animals get adopted.

"It makes everyone really happy because our whole class celebrates when an animal gets adopted. Outside she has pictures of the ones that get adopted, and she'll draw hearts around them, and everybody gets happy, " said 5th grader Andrew Gordon.

Over half of the animals they have featured have been adopted. Some of the students' artwork even hangs in their new homes. For more about any of the animals available for adoption at the Woodford County Human Society visit: https://www.woodfordhumane.org/