Our tree is called "The Trailing Edge of Technology." It features used CDs turned into ornaments, old telephone cord garlands, used computer mice trimmings, and other technological tidbits from the past. Our theme centers on looking towards the future by reusing old technology. The ornaments were made by our students in third through eighth grade, with the help of art teacher Mrs. Washington.
While our theme was chosen with an eye towards whimsical aesthetics, technology (and recycling) is very important to Old Orchard. At our school, which is a private, independent school from PreK-8th grade, every classroom has a computer, and all of our teachers use technology to enhance their lessons. We also have a rolling laptop cart that is used to teach computers in each grade, and our upper school has a laptop program. Old Orchard also has a variety of electives which use technology, such as robotics, video editing, computer programming, and 3-D modeling.
This is the first time Old Orchard has participated in Christmas in the Park. We decided to participate in order to get more involved in our community. Our students have come to Christmas in the Park for years to marvel at the beautiful decorations and trees. We thought it would give them a sense of pride and belonging to have (and help decorate) a tree of their own. Now, when our students visit Christmas in the Park with their friends and families, they can show off their tree and the ornaments they made. We plan to continue participating for many years to come.