Super Powerful Messages

6th grade students were asked to think about what aspects of their personality are "super." They combined their own amazing personality traits with super powers to create their own unique superhero. After creating a sketch of their superhero, students used the online program Tinkercad to create a 3D model of their superhero. After printing their designs using a 3D printer, students added paint and mixed media to complete their superhero figurines. They then created an uplifting card or story to go along with their figurine. Their work was then donated to the Children's National Hospital in Washington, D.C. with the hopes for bringing a smile and joy to another child!

This project was inspired by my own personal experience. As a child I spent a length of time in the hospital and was eventually diagnosed with Systemic-onset Rheumatoid Arthritis (Still's Disease). During my recovery I received a massive bag of handmade cards. I was shocked to see that they were from other children, all of which I had never met! I was so moved by their art and words that when I finally left the hospital I brought all of them with me. I kept the cards safe in a box underneath my bed. For many years whenever I was feeling lonely or sad I would pull them out to read. The kind and inspiring words from these strangers gave me strength and filled my heart with happiness! This simple gesture meant the world to me. I hope that my students’ thoughtful cards and figurines brought similar cheer to others.

Please Note: Before writing messages I reminded my students to not to write "Get well", "Feel Better" or other illness related comments. This is very important because some patients suffer from medical conditions that are chronic, life-long, progressive and/or terminal. Rather, I encouraged them to write uplifting messages and to focus on bringing joy, laughter, and a smile!