From Self to Students: Canvassing Art to Explore Identity

Adriana L. Medina, Reading and Elementary Education, College of Education, UNC Charlotte

Christopher Lawing, Vice President and Director of Programming, Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

This seminar will be held at The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art

This Seminar will allow Fellows to engage with the arts (performing and visual) as a medium for exploring the concept of identity. Identity is the way we perceive who we are – such as gender, race, and ethnicity. These perceptions can change over time in both how we perceive ourselves and how we are perceived. Identity can also influence how we adapt to changes in our world and how we view others’ changing identity.

Fellows will examine ideas around their identity and then explore how they can engage their students in exploring identity in the classroom. The Seminar will utilize the artwork from the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art’s collection as well as performing arts references from a variety of available sources.

The theme of identity can either center on a content area or on the individual him/herself. A few examples of possible curriculum units Fellows might create could be:

  • Novel Study: whereby through art students demonstrate the identity formation of a character in a novel.
  • Science: where the identity of scientists is explored through images of scientists and students can explore how the identity of scientists has evolved over time.

The Seminar Leaders are open to Curriculum Units that focus on Leadership and could be implemented with school faculty and staff or parents.

In addition to a written Curriculum Unit, Fellows will produce an artwork (performing or visual) that represents what they have learned or the art they might create with their students through their Curriculum Unit.

The art pieces will be presented at the Fellows’ Finale.