DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — On a mission to unify her classroom, Dinwiddie High School teacher Jamie Loving set out to find yarn at 3 a.m. Wednesday morning.
“Tuesday night, you know, I stayed up and I was watching everything that was going on and I was thinking about what would happen when I came into school the next day,” Loving explained.
Her late night run would eventually result in a unity arch, connecting students through their beliefs with the yarn. It’s an idea that Loving got from artist Nancy Belmont, who constructed something similar.
“I took out labels and I just said, ‘OK, what can I do if I just have people show that they identify with these beliefs and if they write in their beliefs,” Loving said.
She also put up quotes from each presidential candidate without identifying who said what. Before long, the unity arch project caught on with the rest of the school.
“The agenda is peace. The agenda is to make people have common ground and to have a little bit of hope in something.”
“It was great to do it on the day of, like right after the elections,” senior Jeremiah Campos told 8News. “I think it made a huge difference.”
Freshman Leah Wofford added, “All the strings, they showed us that we could all be connected even if we disagree with someone.”
For some, however, while recognizing the overall purpose of the unity arch, it didn’t quite do enough to address what transpired over the course of this year’s election.
“It made a lot of people more unified, but I don’t think it explained the pressing issues,” junior, Zaria Connolly said. “This election wasn’t about, ‘oh, you’re republican, you’re a democrat. It was about who’s going to be safe after this election and who isn’t.”
Loving also made a positivity wall for students to post good thoughts and encouragement to others who may need a little pick-me-up.
“The agenda is peace,” Loving said. “The agenda is to make people have common ground and to have a little bit of hope in something.”