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Seeing Outside the Box

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Seeing Outside the Box
by Eastchester District Website Administrator - Sunday, November 25, 2018, 11:06 PM

Visiting Artist Christorpher LeaA stapler, a tube of lipstick and a lock. These are just three items that a group of Eastchester High School teachers explored in an entirely new way with visiting artist, Christopher Lea.

Four teachers attended a training session on Nov. 13, to provide them with tools to discover a deeper way of teaching.

Teachers in PD sessionThe faculty members grouped the items into various categories based on size, color and even how the concept of time related to each of the objects. They studied photographs and discussed what they saw and what was missing.

"They are observing how we know the world by discussing it and how we know the world by listening and describing," said Lea.

The goal is for the teachers to share this new way of thinking with their students so they can gain a new perspective in the classroom and beyond.

Each summer, English teacher Dr. Ruth Kambar works with district grant funds to create units for Lincoln Center' s Arts in Education program to connect critical thinking in arts education to our core curriculum.

Teachers engaged in activityDr. Kambar said she met with a group of former students who told her their clearest memories of high school were the times they spent in the Lincoln Center Arts Education Program.

"One student actually told me he realized he had been offered an opportunity to be in the middle of Manhattan connecting visual arts to literature,"  said Dr. Kambar. "He enjoyed our field trips and fondly remembers the experience outside of the classroom." 

The teachers will put the training into practice when they visit the Neuberger Museum of Art next month and view "American Moments," an exhibit by photographer John Shearer.

The exhibit coincides with their lessons on social activism, civil rights, and To Kill a Mockingbird. In January, students will attend To Kill a Mockingbird on Broadway.

Social Studies teachers Matt D' Amico, Michael Boyle, photography teacher Patrick Perry and English teacher Meghan Vingo attended the workshop. Kristen Bellinzoni, Emily Chazen, Jessica Haag, Andrea Smith-Yahia, and Anna Leighton have been previously trained and will also participate in this unit.

"This session truly opened my eyes," said D' Amico. "I do not have a background in photography, but this has expanded the way I look at the world. As a social studies teacher, I often think in terms of facts but I can apply what I have learned to my lessons and see them with a new and different perspective." 

Dr. Kambar hopes to afford elementary school and middle school teachers the opportunity to work with LCE in the near future.

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