I teach art at the high school from which I graduated, which consists of 85% Hispanic, 6.8% Asian, and 6.5% African American students. About 87% of students receive free or reduced lunch. A majority of students are immigrants or come from parents that have immigrated here. This community has become home, and often times, a sanctuary for people who have had to uproot from their countries in order to survive.
However, I don't just want my students to survive—I want them to thrive!
Art is important in helping students find new ways to communicate ideas to others and I want my students to learn how to use art to advocate for themselves. Because a lot of students have never been to a museum or have had exposure to topics of social justice, I think it is urgent that I incorporate this conversation into my lessons.
I am an artist, activist, and educator born in a small town near Morelia, Michoacán, México. As a college student, I learned to see artwork as a platform for change and I focused on celebrating the humanity and dignity of immigrants through art. I am currently teaching high school art at my alma mater. I want to find ways to teach art for social justice and funnel resources to my students to help them amplify their powerful narratives.
These books will provide them with a wide range of examples of artists using their art as narrative, resistance, and activism.
The books range from art history to public art to art as activism. I am teaching visual arts in a trailer on the opposite side of the building from the media center. A classroom library will bring exposure to students within their classroom and will maximize time during instruction.
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