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Collaborative Cavell Art Project - Lunar New Year Dragon

Collaborative Dragon


IMG-20230126-WA0000.jpgThe photos can only show so much!  If you have not done so already, please drop by the school to see the amazing dragon sculpture we created to celebrate the Lunar New Year.  This was a truly collaborative effort, in which every student played a part.  The body of the dragon consists of more than 300 individually decorated paper plates, strung together on a wire, and suspended from the ceiling in the main hallway. The amazing head was made by grade 6/7 students from Div. 2 under the direction of Jonathan Lorne.

Why a school wide project? 

Collaborative projects like this were regular events during my long career as an art teacher in both elementary and secondary schools. I understand the positive effect they can have on students, reinforcing their sense of self-esteem and belonging, when they see what their own small contribution can make to a large and beautiful installation.


Why a dragon? IMG-20230126-WA0002.jpg

Chinese dragons symbolize wisdom, power and wealth and they are believed to bring good luck.  The beautiful colours also have meaning - red for good fortune and gold for prosperity!  You can see that our dragon looks like it is dancing in our hallway so that it can chase away “evil spirits” and welcome prosperous times ahead.  Cavell is looking forward to a lucky and joyous year ahead! Celebrating the Lunar New Year is not simply a Chinese tradition; it is an important day in the calendar for the Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, and Jewish faiths.

I am delighted with the positive way in which all the students and members of staff engaged with this project; it is hard to walk by the dragon without breaking out in a smile. I want to thank all the staff and students, as well as the parents, our engineer Bill Wen, Judy Fung, and my amazing friend Gail Taylor, who helped with the installation.  A special shout out to Jonathan Lorne and div. 2 who made our dragon’s wonderful head.

It was a wonderfully fun project to oversee and direct.

Marietté Smith 




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