Inspiring students all over the world -Willard's Way
Updated: Jan 19
Early this month I was contacted by Art Teacher Katelynn Tronettiin from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. I was overwhelmed with joy to be featured as the "Artist of the Month". The below copy is the original email I was sent and the image shows a picture of their "Artist of the Month" area in the art room. I have added the original emails below.
Email to Willard
Dear Willard Wigan, I am an art teacher from a school outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. I just wanted to reach out to tell you how inspiring you are for my students (as well as me). Every month, we feature a current, living artist in art class as our "Artist of the Month." This month, you are our featured artist. First off, all of our minds are blown. We don't know how you do what you do or even wrap our brains around how it is possible. It is incredible! Your sculpture in the Guinness Book of World Records blew our minds even more. Like, how is that even possible?!
Secondly, your storing itself is inspiring. I was telling my students that we are fortunate to live in a time that provides support when we struggle with math, reading, or writing. We are in a larger building of around 1200 students in grades 4-6, so every class has students that need learning support for an academic subject. Most of these students, as you may already know, thrive in the arts because it's an outlet. We talked about how these resources were not available when you were growing up because they didn't diagnose a learning disability, so it was extremely difficult. When I revealed that you have dyslexia, so many of them lit up! One little girl approached me after to tell me how she has dyslexia, and she was so excited to go home and tell her parents that a world-famous artist is just like her! My heart was so full to see how much your story meant to her. For other students, a handful in each class knew someone in their life (relative or friend) that has dyslexia, so we used it as a teaching moment to inform the others about it. Thank you for sharing your story with the world and creating something so unique and mind-blowing as a contribution to the art world. Your perseverance through childhood to now should be commended as much as your talents. If you want to see your "featured spot" on our art webpage, you can find it at this link: https://sites.google.com/pinerichland.org/ehue-art/home
"Wow! We were so excited to get a response from you! I've attached a picture of our "Artist of the Month" area in the art room. I snagged it at the end of one of my classes recently. Other than that, students are able to visit our school art website for our classroom and click the link to go directly to your artist website. This is the direct link of that feature. Just scroll to the bottom. It will change in December. :) Again, thank you so much! My students were extremely excited to hear that you responded to our original message!".
"Remember, always see the little things as they often make the biggest impact and tell your students never to accept that they can not achieve greatness. We were all born to be great not to be nothing". Willard Wigan
EHUE Art Website Link