Monthly Archives: February 2011

An Idea Emerges


As the PTA Arts Committee reviewed more than one hundred submissions on February 16, the image above emerged as one of the mural ideas by layering several student drawings.

At the foreground is a solitary student walking towards school, a new comer to the community. He is greeted by a classmate; all it takes is one student to begin helping another feel welcome. Then he’s embraced into the larger student body, which is part of a wonderfully diverse neighborhood, within a global city, in an interconnected world.

Time — and your input — will tell if this becomes the final concept. What do you think?


Student Submissions

Following our Valentine’s Contest, more than one hundred PS 102 students and faculty submitted great ideas for our PS 102 Welcome Mural. On February 16, the PTA’s Art Committee met to review the submissions, along with artist Sam Wisneski and the director of the Storefront Art Center, Paul Curtis. Here are some of our favorites.

Pictures and Artifacts

Student and faculty submissions for the PS 102 Mural contest.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

PS 102 Mural, posted with vodpod

Written Submissions

Go here to read more than a dozen of our favorite written entries.

Translating Welcome

DOE has helped us communicate the vision for the PS 102 mural as broadly as possible by translating Ms. Dovi’s mural announcement into Arabic , Chinese, Spanish, and Urdu. Download the translations here:

Please be my PS 102 Valentine


A mural is a giant painting in a public place where an entire community can appreciate the art.

Check out these murals from schoolyards all across America.

Xpress by Toofly Creativity by Kekoa Dream by Ramon Trevino

[Click the thumbnail to view the larger image.]


The difference between those murals and our PS 102 mural is they are already completed, and ours isn’t. In fact, we don’t even know what’s going to be included in our mural, which is why we’re having a Valentine’s Day contest! We want you to help us decide what our mural should look like.

You can do that by entering our Mural Valentine contest. The winners will see your creativity on the schoolyard wall long after you graduate.


On Monday, February 14, bring your ideas for how your family welcomes guests into your home as your Valentine’s Day gift to PS 102.

Your idea can be in the form of a picture you draw, a family photo, a collage or sculpture, an essay, a short story, favorite song or poem lyrics, a favorite game or food — literally whatever your creativity requires!

There’s no limit to your creativity, so feel free to submit more than one idea, as many as you would like. Just be sure to include your name and classroom number so we can return your entries after the contest ends.

Why “Welcome” as a mural theme to celebrate diversity?

Check out this video where William Ury, anthropologist and acclaimed author of Getting to Yes, proposes hospitality as the antidote to bigotry and conflict.

He frames his talk with a great story from the Middle East:

Well, the subject of difficult negotiation reminds me of one of my favorite stories from the Middle East, of a man who left to his three sons 17 camels. And to the first son, he left half the camels; to the second son, he left a third of the camels; and to the youngest son, he left a ninth of the camels. Well three sons got into a negotiation. 17 doesn’t divide by two. It doesn’t divide by three. It doesn’t divide by nine. Brotherly tempers started to get strained. Finally, in desperation, they went and they consulted a wise old woman. The wise old woman thought about their problem for a long time, and finally she came back and said, “Well, I don’t know if I can help you, but at least, if you want, you can have my camel.” So then they had 18 camels. The first son took his half — half of 18 is nine. The second son took his third — a third of 18 is six. The youngest son took his ninth — a ninth of 18 is two. You get 17. They had one camel left over. They gave it back to the wise old woman.

Principal’s Welcome

January 25, 2011

Dear PS 102 Parents and Families,

I am very excited to announce that this spring PS 102 will celebrate the cultural diversity of our school community with the installation of a public art mural in our schoolyard.  Over the next couple of months, you and your children will have opportunities to contribute to the mural’s design.  On several Saturdays, beginning April 30, your family will be invited to help prepare and paint the walls under the direction of local artist, Sam Wisneski, with additional assistance from  the Storefront Art Center and our PTA Arts Committee.

To maximize the contribution of our 1,200 students, we are asking you to send in something that represents what “Welcome” means to you and your children no later than Friday, February 11.  The item may reflect your culture, place of birth, neighborhood customs, favorite games and activities, family traditions, artistic preferences, or anything else of significance to your family.  Examples include:

  • Family photos
  • Favorite game or food (description or pictures if possible)
  • Celebration/party  traditions
  • An original drawing, sculpture, collage
  • Favorite quote, greeting or family saying
  • T-shirt slogans
  • A poem or song lyrics
  • A short story or essay
  • Anything else that reflects how you would welcome a guest into your home.

Please have your child include 3-5 sentences explaining the item’s significance and why it should be represented on the mural.  Be sure the item is labeled with your child’s name and class so that it can be properly returned.    Thank you for your participation!  Don’t forget to check for regular mural announcements and updates.


Theresa Dovi