By Natalie Rosbottom
Big thanks to Maynard Jackson High School (MJHS) Garden Club for helping Grant Park Cooperative Preschool (GPCP) install the “Peace Prevail” peace pole in the rooftop garden at MJHS on April 11. This is one of three peace poles created by the children from the Swans class (multi-age class) for the GPCP Annual Auction and generously donated back to the community by the Wetzel family. The club appreciates Principal Johnson’s participation as well as other MJHS staff and GPCP parents and children.
The children designed three different poles, each pole with an individual message of peace. Some children took a field trip to the Beltline to explore the different types of peace poles that live there and the different messages that were written on the poles. After getting inspiration from the Beltline, the group worked together designing drawings and messages for their peace poles.
The class had decided on three themes that would be displayed on their peace poles: Happy Child, Peaceful Mud Monster, and Peace Prevail.
While exploring some of the school messages and what it feels like to be at GPCP, Hannah said: “Happy Child!” When examining what happy children do, Margot said: “They hold hands, laugh, kiss, [and] hug.”
The Mud Monster peace pole is an extension of the work the children have been doing in the Atelier with Belinda Parra, and is related to the Mud Monster sculpture that is located at the entrance to their school.
The Peace Prevail pole has a message to help promote peace in the community, and is seen as a vehicle to bring attention to children’s contributions to a vibrant community.
GPCP alumni (Logan Pins, Reid Rosbottom, and Zoe Spencer) were a part of the inaugural MJHS roof top garden group, established in 2013; current MJHS Garden Club President Tait Rosbottom is a GPCP alumnus as well. There are GPCP alumni from the school’s first “Cats” class (one year olds) who will be graduating from MJHS this year.