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New murals adorn Children’s Center walls

With a bit of paint and a lot of input from young students of the UTC Children’s Center, blank walls have been transformed to tell a special story. Murals were painted at both centers' learning environments in Brown Academy and Battle Academy, thanks to the good work of Read Aloud Chattanooga guest artists Gale Hinton and Jeannette Jenson.
Mural by artists Gale Hinton
and Jeannette Jenson

“The Children’s Center was chosen for the murals by reputation for encouraging early childhood learning and because of their inner city location,” said Linda Rivers, Director of the UTC Children’s Center.

Read Aloud Chattanooga promotes reading to children as a way to increase vocabulary, which then leads to the probability of success in school.

“Read Aloud is trying to debunk the myth of schools having to teach kids alone. Ordinary people, regardless of their education, can help a child succeed by reading aloud to them and showing them the importance of books,” Rivers said.


Students from the Children's Center at
Brown Academy offer suggestions to artists


Hinton and Jenson spoke with the Children’s Center students at Brown Academy about what they enjoyed, if they had ever been camping, sat in a tree house, or read a book. Each time a child mentioned an animal, the artists incorporated it into the mural.

“We now have a dog, a cat, a squirrel, birds, ants, ladybugs, a train, a sleeping bag, a swing, a mouse, a soccer ball, a basketball, a birdhouse and hot air balloons,” Rivers said.

According to Rivers, the children are convinced that they are seeing their own images in the mural. Students can name the animals, find items within the picture, and make up stories about what the children may be reading.

Children’s Center student Obadele, age 4, enjoys hearing stories and is happy with the new look. “You don’t need words to read a book, just look at the pictures,” Obadele said.

May 20, 2005

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