On Saturday, May 4, at Urban Promise Academy in Oakland, educators from across the Bay Area came to engage with our 2018- 2019 fellows' inquiry work and leadership through a morning of ignite talks, workshops, and documentation booths.
Agency by Design Oakland Fellow Chantel Parnell shares work from her documentation booth, entitled “The Evolution of Reflection: Finding Opportunity for Student Voice Using the Problem Solving Process.” Parnell is a Computer Science Teacher at Bret Harte Middle School.
Agency by Design Oakland Fellowship Director Paula Mitchell and Fellow Jane Lee engaging with Fellow Kristen Vetterlein’s documentation booth entitled “Practicing Self-Reflection and Developing Agency Through Art!”
Agency by Design Oakland Fellow Kurt Kaaekuahiwi standing by his documentation booth entitled, “I Got a Story To Tell: Arts-Making and Cultural Consciousness as Agency.” Kurt is an Ethnic Studies, Art and Making Teacher at Roses in Concrete Community School.
Kurt Kaaekuahiwi and Julia Cheng rearrange a box mural by Kaaekuahiwi’s students at Roses in Concrete Community School.
Another possible iteration of the “box mural” made by students from Roses in Concrete Community School.
A participant writing a teacher appreciation card.
Agency by Design Oakland Fellow Veronica Haro shares her documentation board entitled “Feedback: An Opportunity for Co-Critique and Co-Inspiration” with participant Domonique Jimerson.
Agency by Design Oakland fellow Julie Ellis and a participant catching up near Shraddha Soparawala’s documentation booth entitled “Art of Repair: Transforming Objects and Ourselves.”
Agency by Design Oakland Fellow Erin Posbergh facilitates a hand-on activity at her booth entitled “How Does Tinkering With Materials Affect Content Knowledge?” Posbergh is the Physics Teacher at Oakland International High School.
Erin Posbergh stops at the documentation board detailing the history of Agency by Design Oakland, an independent non-profit organization that is the Bay Area component of the Agency by Design research project developed by Project Zero, a research center at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
“Raise your hand if you are creative,” asks Kurt Kaaekuahiwi when beginning his talk entitled, “Whose Agency? Building Critical Consciousness Through Maker-Centered Learning and Arts Integration.” In his talk, Kurt Kaaekuahiwi asks students in his Ethnic Studies class at Roses in Concrete Community School how art and making can impact engagement within the course.
“How do we humanize using Arts and Making in ways that promoted critical consciousness?” asks Kaaekuahiwi in his ignite talk. “We looked at the design process of making our own skin color. We mixed primary and secondary colors using tinting and shading to make our own shades of browness. ‘Look Mr. K -- this is actually my skin color. I made it, look!’ Students were able to talk about internalized racism, talk about the politics of identity, the politics of being light skinned and of being dark skinned and bright, and talk about what ‘she's hella dark’ comes from, what that means.”
In her ignite talk entitled “Teaching is a Political Act,” Julia Cheng shares her personal reflections on teaching and community building this year, and in doing so, how she is able to center her views and values on in and outside her classroom.
In his ignite talk entitled “Students as Curriculum Designers,” Jeff Embleton and 7th graders co-design a curriculum focused on the refugee experience at ASCEND.
“What we did to support [refugees] was we made donation boxes and gathered money for the IRC (International Rescue Committee),” said Ariana, a 7th Grader from ASCEND. “We created t-shirts and helped refugees by donating the proceeds.”
Our amazing ignite speakers!
Participants start on a “do now” activity at the beginning of a workshop.
In Olivia Franco’s workshop “Gamify Your Lessons!” participants learn how to step back and let the students direct the learning and making through gamification. In this workshop, participants created their own game prototype ideas to bring back to their own classrooms.
In her workshop “Making Circuits Personal,” Bridget Rigby asks, “what parallels can we make between circuits and ourselves?” In this workshop, Bridget shares her students’ work, and asks participants to explore how learning about different circuit systems can be used to examine their own “circuitry.”
In Carrie Moy’s workshop, entitled “Authentic Feedback Through Thinking Routines,“ participants learn how the “Parts, Perspectives, Me” and “Imagine If...” thinking routines can make student voices tangible, so that they can make productive and actionable shifts in teaching and classroom practice.
Tasha Pura asks participants to popcorn read a definition of system in her workshop entitled “Mini-Design Challenge: Choice & Voice While Systems Thinking.”
In her workshop entitled “Shifting the Cognitive Load with Systems Thinking,” Julie Ellis asks participants explore how systems thinking protocols can be infused with social studies standards to engage in deeper learning.
“What are the choices students can make to demonstrate their understanding of systems?” asks Pura in her workshop. Participants engage in hands-on systems thinking by taking apart a system and building a model.
Participants in the midst of building a tree system in Pura’s workshop.
Participants discussing their finished model, demonstrating their shared understanding of the the system of a tree.
In her workshop “Amplifying Voice and Values to Shift School Culture,” Crystal Barr asks how can thinking routines like “Imagine If...” and “Think, Feel, Care” support not just a shift in student thinking, but a shift in school culture?
“What makes home feel like home?” “Can we build it together?” Participants explored empathy and connection by making collaborative homes in Denise Montgomery’s workshop entitled “Creating Empathy & Connection Through Maker-Centered Learning.”
PHOTOGRAPHY by Yasser Alwan, Melhik Hailu, Nico Chen