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Peace thru Art

Contest makes bookmarks messages of harmony 

     Can a bookmark promote peace? That’s the hope of the Maryland Judiciary, which has a big stake in the outcome.
     With kids setting their creativity to resolving conflicts, maybe they can.
     They’ll have their chance at the 12th annual Student Bookmark Art Contest in honor of National Conflict Resolution Day, October 19. Young artists will use crayons, colored pencils and creativity to make bookmarks showing ways of resolving or preventing conflict. They might illustrate peer mediation, talking things out, apologizing, respecting differences, solving problems together, listening, tolerance and alternatives to violence.
     “We are inviting Maryland’s students to explore a variety of ways to resolve conflicts peacefully and to communicate their ideas through their art,” said Mary Ellen Barbera, chief judge of the Maryland Court of Appeals. “Their artwork provides an opportunity to encourage peer-to-peer conversations about peacemaking and non-violent resolution of disagreements.”
     The art may also win prizes. The bookmarks judged most effective in creativity and message will win cash prizes in three age groups. Chief Judge Barbera also invites winners to an awards ceremony December 5 at the Judicial College Education and Conference Center in Annapolis. A wider selection of bookmarks will be printed and distributed.
     More than 2,100 students from across Maryland joined in last year’s contest, with 15 bookmarks chosen as winners and 64 receiving honorable mention.
     Finished image size must be no larger than three inches high by nine inches wide. Label each with student’s name, age, and grade; school or program name; teacher’s or parent’s name and email address; and address where artwork can be returned. Deadline is Thursday, October 19. Details and template:
     Mail or deliver flat, unfolded entries to Alecia Parker, MACRO, 2001 Commerce Park Dr., Suite C, Annapolis, MD 21401.