The Arts at Weizmann Day School

Middle school student Gabi walks with his dad glancing at one side of the art boards while a 1st/4th grade parent admires oil pastel wildlife drawings done by the 2nd grade class.

Weizmann Day School’s annual Art Show (Wednesday, 6/10) was once again a phenomenal spectacle – the Social Hall filled with multi-media art work created by the students in grades K-8.  Renowned local artisan and more than 20-year teaching veteran, Ellen Dinerman, guides the students in her role as the school’s Art/Garden Specialist.  A private Art Show preview (to support the school’s endowment fund campaign) was held Tuesday evening.

A 1st grader crouches down to proudly show off her art work to her dad and alumna sister. The board facing out displays 2nd grade weavings, with a focus on color.

Each year students study different artists and periods of art. This year the kindergarten class studied Picasso’s Blue Period and displayed are their own Blue Period portraits.

Tied into their social studies curriculum, with an emphasis on ancient civilizations, middle school students created their own vessels using the potter’s wheel and then glaze-painted the pieces. The 5th grade class also used the potter’s wheel to create clay masterpieces of a kiddush cup or a hamsa.

The Third graders showed off their unbelievable talents when they made Kachina Dolls, inspired by Southwest Indians, and Bark Canoe Replicas, inspired by Northern Plains Indians, as part of their study of Native Americans.

In middle school, many of the art projects connect to their various areas of study. Above, middle school teachers Albert Marks and Carmela Rotter take joy in standing near the boards displaying their students’ illuminated lettering work which highlighted a favorite line of the character they played from their earlier production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

Below, middle school student Yitzchak tries to explain to his parents the process of collage that was used to mimic the work of artist Guiseppe Arcimboldo, an Italian painter who has a flair for fantastical portrait paintings made of fruit and other various objects.

On the opposite board are samples of kindergarten and 1st grade’s collages, using only the primary colors and black, a style made famous by Dutch artist Piet Mondrian.

Of course, “the arts” does not mean only the fine arts. While there have been studies conducted that prove a hands-on, experiential fine arts education helps to develop higher order and creative thinking skills, so do we know that learning directly from “those who do” can often have a profound impact on young minds. Our middle school students recently hosted two writer’s workshops with a couple of Hollywood’s most current and influential television writers.

Below, the students gather around Christopher Silber, a Weizmann kindergarten and 2nd grade parent, and the well-respected script writer/co-executive producer of the famed television show, NCIS.

Above, the middle school students flank Matt Nix, co-writer and executive producer of Billy Crystal’s new hit comedy series, The Comedians. Nix also shared about his experiences as a director and actor.

Weizmann Day School, 1434 North Altadena Drive, Pasadena, (626) 797-0204 or visit


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