Willow Bill and a young assistant work on a nearly life-size reindeer made of willow branches.
Willow Bill and a young assistant work on a nearly life-size reindeer made of willow branches.

Amidon-Bowen Elementary School had a very special guest artist come for a visit on January 22 and 23. His name is Willow Bill. He comes from Oregon. He brought a variety of willow branches to each class and made an almost life-sized willow reindeer. He used coyote willow from Nevada, red willow from Montana and black willow from Maryland. He explained to the kids that safety is the first thing they should think about when they work with tools. He showed them how to use an electric drill and then let them use it! They did lots of math, measuring the lengths of sticks, learning about fractions and looking for geometric shapes in each part of the design. The children really enjoyed being a part of a real building project. Our school now has 9 reindeer to display. We are looking forward to having them decorated with twinkling lights next December. If you would like more information on Willow Bill and his National Willow Reindeer Project, please go to www.willowbill.com.

By Teresa Neathery, kindergarten teacher at Amidon-Bowen.

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