Teacher Lets Students Decorate A Dress For Her Every Year -- And It's Adorable

by Jerriann Sullivan
Originally Published: 
Image via Facebook/Haley Curfman

The internet is loving this teacher’s dress covered in her students’ artwork

A teacher’s relatively new tradition of having her students decorate a dress for her is going viral, and we’re sure you’re going to love it, too. Haley Curfman shared the idea on Facebook, where it quickly gathered spread to thousands.

“We don’t have art in our school, so, I always try to do little creative projects when possible,” Curfman told Scary Mommy. She teaches second grade at Blackwell Public Schools in Oklahoma and manages The Weary Teacher, a blog about teaching. I went to a high school that specialized in art and academics, so the thought of kids not having creative time breaks my heart. Thankfully, these kiddos have a thoughtful teacher who works it into their day in fun ways. “I use the dress more as an incentive project,” she explained. “When they finish their work or have a little free time they can go draw. I set up a station at a table with the dress and the markers.”

Here is this year’s version.

“This is the second year I’ve done them. I hope to do one every year as a keepsake,” Curfman shared. “I get the dresses off Amazon for less than $20 and use fabric markers from Walmart. When the dress is finished, I surprise my students and wear it to a party.” Last year, she showed her students their finished masterpiece at the class Christmas party and this year she showcased her student’s work at the Valentine’s Day party. “Then I just put it on display. Last year I entered our dress in the county fair and our class got a blue ribbon,” Curfman told us. “I think I will do that again this year, so all the students can see it proudly hanging at the fair.”

This is the dress that won the blue ribbon.

It’s not the first time we’ve read about a teacher having her class create a memory dress, but we still love the concept. It’s a great long-term art project for kids. “It takes anywhere from 2 weeks to a month just drawing on it here and there,” Curfman said. “I just tell them to draw things that make them happy. The only rule is to not ‘X’ things out. I teach 2nd grade and they like to mark things out and start over.” Instead, Curfman pushes the kids to follow through with their ideas even if they are a bit silly. “Having that rule is also why last years’ dress has a Stay Puft Marshmallow man that takes up the whole back,” she said. “That’s what makes them great.”

Don’t be surprised if you see the idea popping up around your kids’ schools. Curfman’s post spread wide and far with teachers. “I think other teachers think it’s creative and fun,” she explained. “All the teachers online seem to love it.”

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