FLETCHER — Max Clark, a fifth grader at the Fletcher Elementary School, has placed first in his grade level division as part of the Vermont Urban and Community Forestry Department’s Arbor Day Poster and Essay Contest. The contest theme this year was to share a story about a tree. Clark’s poster depicts a sturdy maple and his accompanying essay describes a crisp fall day walk in the woods.

“I really like maple trees,” Clark said. “I like the syrup from the maple trees and their colors in the fall. Walking in the woods is relaxing.”

Clark worked on his poster during art class at school. His essay is a true story about writing the word “Vermont” using twigs under a majestic maple tree. Both the poster and essay were featured on WCAX-TV’s show, Across the Fence. Clark received a variety of prizes for his work, including three hardcover books on art and artists.

“The Arbor Day contest was a great opportunity for students to integrate art and literacy,” Fletcher’s Art Teacher, M.C. Baker, said. “Art and writing are each critical forms of expression and drawing connections between the two is an essential life skill.”