I arrived at the Rosenbach Museum and Library on Saturday to TEN, yes I said ten, students from the Arts Academy at Benjamin Rush, all dressed in purple and gray and ready to present their poetry and photography to a group of Philadelphia art educators. The students did a phenomenal job presenting final works and discussing their process and the impact of the program on their class. Some of my favorite quotes of the day include:
“I feel like now I look at everything from a different perspective and see photographs everywhere. I walk around and think, oh I can take a photo of that, or of that and write a poem about it.”
” I feel like this project taught me lessons in school, but it more taught me lessons about life that I can take with me.”
In addition to our presentation the students all sat and listened to representatives from Young Playwrights present about their in-school programs. They even got a taste of what teacher seminars are like by participating in a writing and reflection exercise (aka Saturday homework). However, I think ending the afternoon with a free tour of the Maurice Sendak collection made it all worth it! I am very proud of each and every one of them!
I’m gearing up today to present at the Arts Inquiry Seminar through The Philadelphia Writing Project this Saturday, May 19 at the Rosenbach Museum and Library. Joining me will be Lorraine Ustaris, 9th grade English and AP English teacher at the Arts Academy at Benjamin Rush, and 6 of her students. The fact that she managed to get 6 of her students to do this on a Saturday, in May nonetheless, is amazing! I’m dying to know what her trick is… so I can steal it to use on other people!
We will be discussing the LTP program in general as well as specifically how she introduced it into her classrooms. Her students will each present photographic and written works they created over the last semester and then open the floor for teachers to ask questions of all of us. No worries, photographs and video will be taken to share!
The Arts Inquiry Seminar is an open continuity program through The Philadelphia Writing Project that provides a space for K-12 teachers in all disciplines to engage in an inquiry into how the arts can be infused into their classrooms and schools. This is an opportunity for teachers to collectively explore how their practice can be transformed through arts integration. Participants are awarded 1 continuing education credits upon successful completion of course requirements.
This past October I had the wonderful opportunity to meet Lillian Dunn of Apiary Magazine during a workshop with the Philadelphia Writing Project at Penn.
Apiary Magazine is a FREE, curated literary magazine released twice a year in print and online that includes a wide variety of writing and visual art from across Philadelphia. It is suitable for ages 13 and up AND can include writing and visual arts by students 13 and up! With that said…
ATTENTION Learning Through Photography at Moore educators! Be sure to favorite this website and keep up with their submission deadlines. Apiary is a wonderful opportunity for your LTP students to showcase the work, both visual and written, that is happening in your classrooms!
Visit the APIARY Magazine submission page for more information. You will find a section for Youth Submissions with important details and guidelines. Good luck!
I had the pleasure of sitting on the plenary panel for the Philadelphia Writing Project’s 10th Annual Celebration of Writing and Literacy event this past Saturday along with Varissa McMickens of ArtsRising, Dennis Creedon and Vera DaVinci from the School District of Philadelphia, Blake Bradford of The Barnes Foundation, Steve Wills from the Philadelphia Museum of Art, among many other arts professionals in Philadelphia who contribute to our thriving arts and cultural community.
We spoke with educators from schools in the Philadelphia region about resources and programs that we provide to schools; what ideal partnerships look like between arts organizations and schools; what they consider to be the biggest “roadblocks” to bringing arts programs to their students; and how writing, literacy and the arts look in the 21st century with new technologies and ways of learning available.
It was a wonderful afternoon and we are so appreciative that the Philadelphia Writing Project gave us an opportunity to continue to spread the word about Learning Through Photography at Moore to more educators in the area.
-Liz Gilly / Outreach and Public Programs Coordinator
The first photos and writing by middle and high school students participating in Project WRITE, an annual summer program of The Philadelphia Writing Project, during trips through West Philadelphia and areas around the University of Pennsylvania have been uploaded to Seeing My City!
Join our Flickr site today to see the images and add your own to help us build a photographic map and shared dialogue about the different communities that make up Philadelphia as seen through your eyes and experiences.