Classroom Teacher: Ayinde Purnell
Teaching-Artist: Lindsay Sparagana
Through photography, printmaking, collage and mixed media techniques, students explored their individual identity as well as their collective identity as members of the student body at Sankofa Freedom Academy. All students began by experimenting with printmaking and patterning through linoleum block printing. After discussions about photobooks, lessons in digital photography and demonstrations of altered books, students worked on two collaborative projects that incorporated their block prints well as photographs that they made. One group made a photobook with each student represented by a page of photos collaged over their prints. They made decisions about color, scale and placement. The other group aspired to photograph the entire ninth grade, and did so using their block prints as backdrops for the photographs. They exposed the portraits on small squares of cyanotype fabric and sewed them together to create a large wall hanging. This became a portrait of the ninth grade as a whole and now hangs in a public space in the school.