This digital gallery is a presentation of the students’ creativity. We hope it will inspire, entertain and help reinforce the environmental message from Birds Canada. Their pledge – create a safer space for birds.
Milliken Mills High School conducts an annual Earth Day event to promote environmental awareness and create meaningful and engaging, nature stewardship activities for students. Led by Christopher Williams (Head of Alternative Education) and Kathleen Middleton (Head of Visual Arts) who wanted to make 2020, Earth Day’s 50th anniversary year, particularly significant.
Birds Canada is Canada’s leading organization dedicated to the conservation of birds and their habitats, for the benefit of birds and humans alike. Their programs imagine and design bird-friendly cities, they coordinate thousands of volunteers to monitor bird populations, and engage communities to cultivate nature caring people.
Shadowland Theatre has long integrated nature and art through community workshops and outdoor performances in parks and public spaces. Parades and site-specific works celebrate the natural world with spectacular images such as giant puppets, stilt-walkers and music.
In 2019, while working with Shadowland artists, Birds Canada witnessed the power of the arts to create and animate connections with communities unfamiliar with birds. Andrés Jiménez, Birds Canada’s Urban Program Coordinator, connected with Chris Williams and the Milliken Mills High School Earth Day Bird Celebration was born.
Thanks to the support of the Ontario Arts Council and TD Friends of the Environment the three organizations created a plan for a full day of bird-friendly activities, culminating in a large parade showcasing the students’ work. When Covid-19 hit mid-project and schools closed we changed tactics and invited the students to submit their work in a range of artistic forms online. The teachers and artistic team provided guidance and the students responded with this fantastic array of photos, artworks, poems, music and audio works.
Explore and enjoy!
Milliken Mills High School Bird Celebration 2020
Artwork, audio and music by Milliken Mills High School students
Artist educators – Brad Harley, Anne Barber, Chris Wilson, Ben Lee
Nature Educator – Andrés Jiménez
Indigenous teacher – Alan Colley
Jane Batson - Music
Michelle Coleman - Art
Steven Kolodziej - Technology
Kathleen Middleton - Art
Anil Mody - English
Maria Sullivan - Dance
Naguib Kaval - Drama
Chris Williams - Personalized Alternative Education
Liana Williams - Special Education/HPE
Video edited by Hayden Silberer
Sound edited by Sequoia Erickson
Additional music provided by Chris Wilson and Ben Lee
Website designed by Sequoia Erickson