Cultural Competency in the Classroom Using Proverbs

Although I have been presenting Professional Development workshops for teachers for quite a few years, I just recently started offering them as an independent presenter. I was thrilled to have been able to offer this workshop for Long Island teachers via the Huntington Arts’ Journeys in Education Program, which brings multicultural programming to Long Island schools.

The Path is Made by Walking: using Proverbs to Develop Cross Cultural Competence –

An introduction to cross-cultural competence in the classroom. Cultural competence is the ability to successfully teach students who come from a culture or cultures other than our own. By participating in activities that connect the cultures that shape us personally and professionally, we can begin to develop personal and interpersonal awareness and sensitivities that lead us to understanding certain bodies of cultural knowledge, to begin to acquire a skill set of effective cross-cultural and culturally responsive teaching.

Every culture passes down proverbs in the oral tradition. These traditions cross cultural lines by connecting us in a way that is personal and human. Participants will share proverbs and sayings that they remember from their childhood or adolescence. In choosing proverbs, we understand the commonality of cultures. In this workshop, participants create mixed media collages using a chosen proverb, followed by sharing time, discussion and Q&A. 

It was a fantastic experience to meet 24 enthusiastic, engaged and talented teachers from many different backgrounds and disciplines. It was really special to know that not all were art teachers since this workshop is designed as a multidisciplinary project.

I am happy to see more core curriculum teachers embrace the idea of an arts integrated lesson and explore their own creativity.

Here are some in-progress and finished pieces from that day and some super nice quotes from participating teachers.

Contact me at eljaiekart@gmail.com or use the contact form below, if you are interested in bringing Art Out of Anything classroom or PD workshops to you school or organization.

                 

 

                     

I love the idea of having kids choose a proverb that means something to them and illustrating it.”      “Super engaging and insightful! ”    
Presenter was very knowledgeable and easy to listen to and understand.”    “I’ll do some of the activities she demonstrated.”
“A lot of fun”

 

                       

 

 

Landscape and Perspective

It’s great to collaborate with other organizations and fantastic artists. I had so much fun presenting a workshop with Milestales founder AmaYawson in Far Rockaway.

We started the workshop with a few breathing exercises to get us in a calm, focused state. Arts as meditation is not a new concept and many of us achieve state of relaxed, focused concentration without even realizing it, most people commonly refer to it as being “in the zone”. Here are just a few of the amazing landscape paintings the students created using 1 point perspective. They were great!

 

Sandy Mobiles

This week at our Friday workshop we looked at the work of one of my favorite artists, Alexander Calder. 
Usually when I introduce Calder, we make shapes out of paper or cardboard for our mobiles. This time I decided to use make up sponges instead. I love the colorful ones in funky shapes but the white ones were easier to find in bulk.
The kiddos colored them with markers and stuck gardening wire into each one. Balance was a tough concept but I think they did pretty well. They were all excited to take them home. I call that a success ;)

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Winter Workshops

Art history inspires and encourages exploration of found and re-cycled materials.

A Review of Student Work

We have been so busy, it’s been a while since our last post. I would like to showcase some of the amazing work the students have created at a few different venues with traditional and non-traditional materials. We have everything from giant food to insects.

Wake up!

Sir Ken Robinson’s mission is to “ transform the culture of education and organizations with a richer conception of human creativity and intelligence. ”

I had the opportunity to see him speak in person almost 10 years ago and it lit a fire in me that has only grown. Thank you for verbalizing what I and many others had been struggling to articulate.

Please visit his site here and wake up!

http://sirkenrobinson.com

Found Object Printing

The best thing about inheriting someone’s classroom is what they leave behind in the closet. I have had these cut pieces of thin rubber strings sitting, waiting for some inspiration. We started creating a “printing block” using longish strands of yarn but the printing plate needed something extra. A little masking tape, paint and voila, a new use for those rubber “spaghetti” strips!

We used the same technique of painting the printing block, burnishing and lifting the print from the plate. The result can be hit or miss but after all, exploring and understanding what doesn’t work is an important part of the process as well.