Middle School artists create their own celebrations of Diwali

Good luck and prosperity at the Bridgewater-Raritan Middle School was delivered by the artwork created by the students to celebrate Diwal on Wednesday, October 26.

To commemorate Diwali, which was observed by the Bridgewater-Raritan Regional School District's 11 schools on Monday, October 23, students grabbed their chalk and created Rangoli designs on the front entrance and the side walkways to the Middle School.

Students who participated in this artful event were presented with a pass card, which included a written explanation of Diwali that included the meaning of the word, which is “Festival of Light.”

The description on the card also educated the students that Diwali is the “Most celebrated holiday in South Asian cultures” and that it  “Celebrates how good conquers evil, knowledge wins over ignorance, and light beats out darkness.”

Rangoli is a form of art of decoration drawn on the floor of the entrances of homes. It is thought that the art brings good luck and prosperity in the house and in the family and to also welcome guests, according to an explanation on Wikipedia.

The idea to hand out the chalk and let the students show off their artist skills came from the Middle School’s newly formed Equity Committee.

Seventh Grade Assistant Principal Priscilla Aniegbuna, who is one of the 20 members of the committee, reported on the development of the Rangoli outside exhibit.

 “We held our first meeting recently and one of our goals is to celebrate the diversity of our school,” Assistant Principal Aniegbuna said. “Diwali was the first holiday that came up so what better way to celebrate it then with the students designing the Rangoli.”

Assistant Principal Aniegbuna credited the Middle School’s art teacher, Mary Kate Ambrose, with creating the stencils that assisted the students in their drawings.

 Ms. Ambrose is also one of the 20  Equity Committee members that include administrators, staff and teachers.

“ I showed the students in class what Indian Rangoli is,” Ms. Ambrose said. “We have a diverse population here and creating Rangoli encourages the students to share, teach and do something together.”

The students followed directions on how to design from a poster on the school building.

“We will hold more events down the road so we can continue to celebrate with our kids,” Assistant Principal Aniegbuna said.