Highland Secondary art teacher Charlotte Hood-Tanner’s projects are often the subject of interesting community stories.
She is a master at getting her students involved with the community. Comox’s ‘waving granny,’ Tinney Davidson, found out about that first-hand.
Tinney Davidson was somewhat of an icon among Highland students. The Comox resident would sit in her living room window and wave at students every morning, as the kids walked to school.
When Charlotte heard that Tinney was moving to another neighbourhood, she rallied her students for a surprise visit. More than 400 Highland students showed up on Tinney’s front awn for an epic send-off, which made international headlines.
That’s just one example of how Charlotte Hood-Tanner goes the extra mile with her students.
This past Christmas, Charlotte was at it again, taking it upon herself, and her art students, to rejuvenate a wooden display of carollers that used to greet Comox residents when they got to the top of Comox Road every Christmas season.
Due to their deteriorating condition, the characters were replaced with a ‘Happy Holidays’ sign. That is, until Charlotte took charge.
She reached out to a Town employee and they brought the characters out of storage and into the classroom, as a project for her Grade 9 and 10 students.
Charlotte and her students brought the characters back to life, so to speak, and the traditional festive scene at the top of Comox Road was back where it belonged last Christmas.
She also uses her art classes to delve into more poignant cultural issues.
In September of 2018, Charlotte led her Grade 11/12 class through a reconciliation learning journey that involved incorporating the 94 calls to action in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).
Always willing to take that extra step for the sake of educating her students, Charlotte Hood-Tanner is this year’s Educator of the Year.