Photo courtesy Elise Then

Elise Then, a student at Beaverton’s Findley Elementary, scored one of the top five spots in Google’s 13th annual Doodle for Google art competition for kindergarten to 12th grade students across the country. She was the top winner in the fourth to fifth grade category. As a national finalist, she won a $5,000 college scholarship, Google hardware and fun Google swag. While Elise did not go on to win the grand prize, she was very excited to be named a finalist.

Elise’s artwork consisted of origami birds and other wildlife spelling out the word “Google.” She was inspired by the competition’s theme “I am strong because …” and her love of birds. Elise spent a month intricately folding paper for her Doodle. She picked up the art of origami as a way to make gifts for her mom. “On Mother’s Day last year, I wanted to do something very special for my Mom,” says Elise. “So I was searching on YouTube for the perfect Mother’s Day card. Then I came across an origami ‘I love you Mom’ card. After I finished making it, I realized that origami was really fun! And I realized origami was for me.”

Visit Doodle for Google to learn more about the competition, and plan to enter your student next year!

Denise Castañon
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