SST Schools prides itself on innovation and trailblazing since the launch of our first school in 2005. Nearly two decades later, SST Bayshore continues to set a leading standard with its latest campus mural. The mural illustrates a vibrant, colorful shark, Bayshore's mascot, immersed in waves and sunlight. The monumental piece will display proudly at the school's entrance as a prime example of what SST students can achieve.
Ms. Nicole Belmontes joined the SST Bayshore team last August. The idea for the mural came to her during the interview process for SST Bayshore. She pitched it to the principal, Ms. Lardin, as she pitched herself for the position. After SST Bayshore welcomed her onto the team, the planning for the mural began.
The project took about a year, from start to finish. Ms. Belmontes worked on sketches and designs for the mural and eventually introduced the project to her students, who eagerly shared their input. Initially, the kids struggled to see how a two-dimensional sketch could be scaled and transformed into a three-dimensional wall of bottle caps. They, however, pushed on. They reworked the design multiple times, accounting for the colors of bottle caps available in the marketplace. Bottle cap collecting underway, they evolved their creativity bringing in all sorts of tops: plastic easter egg halves, Lysol can lids, play-doh lids, and more!
The bottle cap collection ran for a large part of the school year, but the mural construction officially kicked off in April. On May 4th, Belmontes and her students began painting the foundation, and on May 9th, the caps got drilled into place. The 8x16 ft mural took a total of 15 days to install.
The students learned many lessons during the experience. They learned about project planning and execution. They helped design an art installation as their input was sought and respected throughout the design process. The students developed valuable character traits like dedication and persistence. Their mural recycled 10,062 bottle caps that otherwise would've ended in a landfill or the ocean. Finally, the students developed autonomy as artists.
For Ms. Belmontes, the artist and teacher who spearheaded the project, the mural is "a representation of the love and joy that [she] had this year working at SST Bayshore."
See the mural for yourself! Request a tour today.