Shelby Darby, with one of the stalls that she painted in the girls restroom at HTCA.
The bathroom stalls at HTCA will be an area where girls can find verses of love and positivity. Shelby Darby, a teacher and an artist, wanted them to have a place of alone time with the word.
Harvest Time teacher paints words of inspiration for students
Shelby Darby, a history and art elective teacher at Harvest Time Christian Academy for three years was nominated last year for the first Kiwanis educator award. In her spare time, she does custom art work and murals or calligraphy for weddings or event invitations, so it was no surprise that she wanted to spread love, happiness and positivity for young girls at HTCA.
“My goals are to always go above and beyond for the students HTCA so that they always know that I’m here for them and love them with all of my heart,” Darby said. With that in mind, and knowing that the kids are our future, her main goal is to nurture them spiritually to become the best humans they can be.
HTCA has a special place in Darby’s heart. Her love for the school is evident in her actions as is her love for the students. Tiring days could bring down the typical teacher, but for Darby, her tiring days are when her ideas blossom because in those times, she says she finds herself wanting to do more than she can offer them.
“The girls, they hold a special place in my heart and they deserve a beautiful bathroom. The bathroom, it was originally all brown and boring and I wanted to change that,” she said. That’s when she decided to let her hands and mind lead the way. “The bathroom is now inviting and colorfulf or them and that makes me so happy.”
The art was free handed in chalk and painted in her designs from there. Having done art for many years, Darby has learned to let her heart lead the way. A lot of her training came from a place no one could have guessed. “Clayfish Bisque was where I worked during college, working there allowed me to practice my art everyday on pottery until I could move to bigger and better things like murals,” she said.
This upcoming school year will begin in a few short weeks and during this social distancing, students can feel alone, but once they walk into the restroom, things can change for them in an instant just by reading. They can take that visual of the bathroom stall with them through out the day.
“Shelby also painted murals within the lunchroom for the rest of the students to enjoy,” Assistant Principal Janie LeBlanc said, “She is an incredible asset to us at Harvest Time Christian Academy.” LeBlanc added that not only does Darby serve their students as the history and art teacher, but she goes above and beyond to make their campus beautiful with her artwork and dedication to the school.
Looking for something postive in each day suddenly became easier, thanks to Darby, a postive influencer in the form of a teacher.