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Re: Inner City Teaching
[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]brenda jones
Sat, 18 Apr 1998 08:21:32 -0500
I'm not sure that one would definitely call our school inner city as
most people don't think of the midwest as having anything inner city.
But, we have 2,200 students, all socio economic and racial groups. In
many of my classes, there is no dominant race. We have a large English
as a second language and special education population. We also have a
"school within a school International Baccalaureate"program. This isn't
a suburban school as I have taught in a suburban school and this is
definitely different. I love it. But, I will admit that the students are
harder to work with. There are major attendance problems, etc. and just
when you think you have it handled you call a parent at home about
attendance and the mom says, "sorry, I withdrew him from school because
he needed to be at work longer hours." Well, I wish I could win
everyone, but the truth is I don't. But, I do a lot of unusual, I guess,
things with the students. Almost everything starts with an art
historical context (not always Western European canons, though) and
then the connection to their own lifes. I really like, and use a lot,
material from Marilyn Stewart having to do with self identity. I have to
say that the kids really connect with that.
A cool thing that we are looking at next year is trying to take some
components of the Gallery 37 project in Chicago and fitting it to our
school. My principal is planning on going to a workshop with me related
to that. Also, we have night school in our building for students. We
probably have about 400 students enrolled. Next year we are looking at
offering some art courses that are for both parents and students.