Every year, the School of the Arts' senior class chooses a community service project, and this year Toys for Tots was selected.

Toys for Tots is a campaign to collect new and unwrapped toys for local children in need. As of mid-December, students had collected more than 800 toys to donate, and hoped to exceed their goal of 1,000.

Barbara Wojciechowski, who is in charge of the event, scheduled daily activities during December. Students paid to throw water balloons at school administrators, bought and threw pies at their favorite teachers and brought in toys to attend the ice-cream social.

Rob Fowler of WCBD-TV 2 has appeared on the morning announcements encouraging students to bring in toys.

Teachers contribute to reference book

Three teachers from the School of the Arts English and Creative Writing department contributed to a critically acclaimed reference book published recently by Facts on File.

"Post War Literature, 1945-1970" received a positive review from the School Library Journal, which praised the "astonishing amount of solid information" in the book and applauded its usefulness to teachers and students.

AP English teacher John Cusatis edited the volume and wrote the introduction, glossary, annotated bibliography and study guides on "Wise Blood" and "The Catcher in the Rye."

Cusatis also contributed the article "Popular Music as Literature."

Susanne Drennan, chairwoman of the English Department, provided a study guide for "Fahrenheit 451."

Rutledge Hammes, a creative writing instructor, contributed the article "Confessional Poetry."

Bob Bell, an English teacher at James Island Charter High School, wrote several entries for the volume, and Susan Farrell, a College of Charleston professor, also contributed.

The book provides 40 study guides on important novels, plays and topics associated with the post-war period. The guides provide students with potential research topics, background information and an annotated list of the best resources to aid their study of literature.

Juniors marry classics, art in performances

Over the summer, students in Ruth Passerello's junior English class were assigned several classics, plays and novels: Kate Chopin's "The Awakening," Tennessee Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire," Michael Shaara's "The Killer Angels," Ralph Ellison's "Invisible Man," Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird" and J.D. Salinger's "The Catcher in the Rye."

Students created presentations based on their assignments and integrated their art major into the performance. On Nov. 30, several students were selected to go to Charleston Place to present their projects as part of the South Carolina Gifted and Talented Consortium.

Students dressed up as the characters from the books and imitated their mannerisms.

Anna Mathias, Claire Bailey, Jonathon Pizarro and Rachael Messick dressed up as entertainers from Ralph Ellison's "Invisible Man" and performed as a string quartette.

Sabrina McIntyre dressed as a mourner from "The Awakening" and sang in French.

Sullivan Hamilton and Phoebe Crouse played the roles of Blanche and Stella from "A Streetcar Named Desire" in a scene they wrote. Jacob Hallex performed a monologue as Stanley from "Streetcar."

Luke Borden, Madison Smith and Zachary Sharpe dressed as characters from "The Catcher in the Rye." Luke and Madison presented their artwork. Zachary Sharpe read a poem he wrote. Devin Hartley presented her artwork, which highlighted different viewpoints, and dressed as Scout Finch from "To Kill A Mockingbird."

Junior Phoebe Crouse commented "This performance focused on showing other teachers and schools how well the arts and academics are intertwined and make things more interesting for the students."

Got feedback? Reach our young journalists through their editor at janegreen@postandcourier.com or comment at www.postand courier.com/yourlowcountry.