Wentworth, Altgeld schools come together through the arts - FOX 32 News Chicago

Wentworth, Altgeld schools come together through the arts

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Two Chicago public schools merging because of the closures are trying to make the students comfortable with the transition.

Students from Wentworth and Altgeld Elementary are learning more about each other through the arts.

You wouldn't be able to tell based upon looking at them, but the kids have only known each other for less than two weeks.

"When children get together, children are going to be children," says Wentworth Elementary Principal Dina Everage. "And once they begin to start knowing each other and meeting each other, it just makes the process so simple. They don't have the same hang ups that grown people have."

Dina Everage is getting ready to welcome students from Altgeld Elementary, one of the Chicago Public schools closing this fall.

The schools teamed up with Columbia College Chicago to give the children an outlet to get to know one another before the new school year.

Kids were able to paint together, dance together, and drum together; even trying out acting with a skit about bullying.

"They're developing based on those interests and hopefully relationships that will serve them into the school year and also help these kids become leaders when they go back at the beginning of the year," says April Langworthy, Director of Community Schools Columbia College Chicago.

Students from both schools were nervous about meeting, but now they see how similar they are.

"They fun, they funny," says 7th grade Wentworth student Raymon Grove. "We're becoming friends and stuff."

"It's very, very fun to meet the other kids from Wentworth because my classmates and I had thought that we weren't going to get along until I met them. And we all get along," adds Zanae Mayfield.

Wentworth's principal hopes the two weeks these students have spent together will have a trickledown effect on their other classmates when the schools merge in the fall.

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