Program Flyer: Perspectives: Understanding African-American Experiences through Art

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Content Provider
Contact Information
Camille Tewell
2110 Blue Ridge Road
Raleigh, NC  27612
Phone: (919) 664-6782
Program Title
Perspectives: Understanding African-American Experiences through Art
Program Type
Individual Program
Program Rating
This program has not yet been evaluated.
Target Audience
Education: Grade(s) 9, 10, 11, 12
Maximum Number of Participants
Minimum Number of Participants
Primary Disciplines
Social Studies/History, Fine Arts, Language Arts/English, Reading
Video Clip
Video: Interview with NCMA Curator John Coffey about Lawrence’s Forward and Mayr’s Kitchen Ball:
Program Description
Through the North Carolina Museum of Art’s collection of American art, students explore the big question: How do artists represent African-American history and experiences? In this interdisciplinary, interactive experience, students investigate two paintings depicting differing narratives of enslaved Africans in the pre-Civil War era. Students use visual analysis and work collaboratively to make meaning from the paintings, examining a work of poetry in tandem to deepen their exploration. Students learn about the paintings from museum experts and respond to the works of art by creating and sharing original, collaborative works of poetry during the live videoconference. 
Program Format
Pre-conference (2-3 class periods): Students examine the NCMA’s Forward by Jacob Lawrence and Kitchen Ball at White Sulphur Springs, Virginia by Christian Mayr through guided group discussion and small group work. Students watch a video featuring NCMA Curator and Deputy Director for Art John Coffey to enrich their understanding of the works of art. Teachers guide students through a reading of I, Too by Langston Hughes to continue exploring perspectives of African-American experience and to consider the way in which literary works complement experiences with works of visual art. Pre-conference materials provide a structure and specific prompts for teachers to use in exploring both the works of art and the poem.

Videoconference (45 minutes total): In the galleries within proximity to one or both of the featured works of art, an NCMA facilitator leads a conversation with students addressing questions about the paintings generated during preconference group discussion and clarifying areas of confusion. Next, students are prompted to work with a partner to create original, collaborative poems that respond to the work(s) of art while adhering to a given structure. At the close of the session, students share/perform their poems, reflecting with the NCMA facilitator about the process and their choices.

Post-conference: Teachers are provided with a variety of options for extending the experience, including, but not limited to, supplementary works of art from the NCMA collection and suggested ways for exploring them as well as associated project ideas for hands-on expression in the visual arts.
Students examine works of visual and literary art representing different views of the African-American experience.
Students respond to works of art by analyzing what they see, making comparisons between works of art, and writing.
Students collaborate to create original works of poetry.
National/Common Core Standards to which this program aligns
State/Regional Standards to which this program aligns
North Carolina Social Studies Essential Standards
American History I and II:
AH1.H.1.3, AH2.H.1.3
Use Historical Analysis and Interpretation to:
2. Consider multiple perspectives of various peoples of the past.
4. Evaluate competing historical narratives and debates among historians.
AH2.H.1.2, AH1.H.1.2.
Use Historical Comprehension to:
2. Differentiate between historical facts and historical interpretations.
4. Analyze visual, literary and musical sources.

African-American Studies Elective:
AAS.H.1.2 Analyze competing historical narratives and debates among historians.
AAS.H.2.1 Analyze how key turning points in history have affected the lives of African Americans.
AAS.H.2.2 Explain how key historical figures have shaped the lives of African Americans.
AAS.H.2.3 Explain how various forms of resistance by individuals and groups have influenced change in the lives of African Americans.

North Carolina Standard Course of Study for English Language Arts
Anchor Standards for Reading:
1. Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
2. Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
4. Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
9. Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.

Anchor Standards for Writing:
4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
5. Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
10. Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.

North Carolina Visual Arts Essential Standards
I.V.1.4 Analyze images through the process of deconstruction (the components of the image and its meaning).
I.CX.1.1 Use visual arts to explore concepts of civics and economics, such as systems, functions, structures, democracy, economies, and interdependence. I.CX.1.2 Understand the role of visual art in documenting history.
P.CX.1.1 Understand the role of visual arts in United States history as a means of interpreting past eras within an historical context.
P.CX.1.2 Understand how personal perspective is influenced by temporal context.
Program Length
45 minutes
Date/Time Notes
Program must be requested 3 weeks prior to requested lesson date.
Program Cost
Point to Point: $125.00
Point to Point Premium: $100.00
Program Fee Notes
North Carolina schools receive $25 off the CILC Regular Price. North Carolina public schools whose percentage of low-income students has been determined by the state Department of Public Instruction as 60% or higher may be considered for a scholarship to cover the cost of the program. Please indicate in your email if you are eligible and interested in a scholarship.

To pay for your field trip with a credit card, please use the following link:
Cancellation Policy
Programs are non-refundable, however cancellations due to technical difficulties, school closings, or those received 48 hours in advance may be rescheduled for no additional charge. Rescheduling is subject to availability.
Is recording allowed?

Program Delivery Mode(s)
Videoconference - H.323 (Polycom, Cisco/Tandberg, LifeSize, etc...)
Videoconference – Webcam/desktop (Zoom, Skype, iChat, Vidyo, Movi/Jabber, Blue Jeans, etc...)

No times available
For additional assistance, phone 507-388-3672.

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