The Power of Love Honored by Boyd County Students
The Ashland Beacon
Martin Luther King once said, “I know that love is ultimately the only answer to mankind’s problems.” How do you interpret that statement? Do you find it true?
Three local elementary students from Boyd County School District made an impact on the Kentucky Heritage Council for their interpretation of King’s quote by showcasing how love really can make a difference. Fifth grader Allie Jackson from Cannonsburg Elementary, fourth grader Sophie Griffith and fifth grader Peyton Moore from Ponderosa Elementary were recognized this month in Frankfort for their art submissions to the 2022 Martin Luther King Student Art-Essay-Poetry Awards put on by the Kentucky Heritage Council. Griffith and Moore both received second place for their art and Jackson received third place.
These students are part of the the Lion Academy taught by Lisa Wiler and Kim Wilbur. Wilbur stated that the “Lion Academy is one of the services provided to students identified as Gifted and Talented in academic areas per Kentucky state guidelines. We focus on creative and critical thinking skills through hands-on activities and authentic experiences. Our 4th and 5th grade students attend Lion Academy one day a week, while other grades rotate one day a month.” The project was perfect for these students to showcase their talents in artistic ability, as well as apply critical thinking by interpreting King’s quote.
Jackson drew two people of different races shaking hands inside a heart with the world around the heart. On the outside of the circle, she put the quote by Martin Luther King Jr.
Jackson remarked, “I decided to draw this because I thought it captured the theme and it had a message. Honoring Martin Luther King is important to me because it means giving him credit for what he did to fight for equality.”
Griffith drew an American flag with a black and white broken heart put back together with a bandage. “I wanted to represent that black and white people needed to be cured with love,” commented Griffith.
Moore drew a person with special powers fighting a monster of hatred. Love was the powerful force that destroyed the monster. Moore exclaimed, “People are good and can find the greatness inside of them. If one person believes in love and happiness, it can make a difference. Don’t go with the pack. Martin Luther King, Jr. had such futuristic guidance to problems. His words matter! What we do matters. I wanted to capture that in my art.”
These three students received an invitation to be recognized at the Awards Ceremony in Frankfort, KY at the Kentucky Historical Society on January 12. They enjoyed their trip and experience while there. Jackson remarked, “It felt amazing to be recognized for my artwork. I was excited about the opportunity to go to Frankfort, and I enjoyed it very much.” Griffith was nervous about being recognized, but she said she was “excited and honored to go.” This was Griffith’s first trip to Frankfort. “We got a private tour of the Capitol, and I got to see my grandfather’s picture.” Griffith’s grandfather is Larry Ball, who had his photography selected to be on display for six months in the Capitol. Obviously, artistic vision must run in the family! Moore was the most enthusiastic of all. Moore declared, “It was super duper awesome! I love all of history. I got to see a big grand staircase that is a replica in the Governor’s Mansion. It was beautiful!”
These three students made Boyd County proud not only through their art, but through their way of thinking and conduct. The future looks brighter with kids like Allie Jackson, Sophie Griffith and Peyton Moore making a difference. Let’s join them in their vision for making the world brighter through love.
The words of John Lennon’s song “Imagine” come to mind:
“Imagine all the people
Livin' life in peace
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one”
The words from John Lennon’s song remind us of a dream this world is still pursuing. If we simply love, it can make a difference.