Drawing • Collage • Clay • Painting • Paper Making • Puppetry • Mix Media • Mural making


History of Design • Elements & Principles of Design • Graphic Design • Web Design • App Design • 3D Printing • Game Design




Lower Manhattan Community Middle School
Grade 7

This lesson was an exploration with literature and typography. Students learned and discussed the definition of typography, which is the art of lettering. The elements and principles of design were used as a tool to create form, composition, and balance. Typographical posters were used as examples from designers all around the world. Students were asked to pick their favorite piece of writing, whether it be a poem, song, or literary theme and extract keywords that reflected its main idea. They used these words to create digital art pieces that reflected the true essence of the literature. I demoed some advanced techniques in Adobe Photoshop and provided online video tutorials for students with special needs to have a visual graphic organizer to complete the lesson. Finally, students were asked to share their artworks in a formal critique in class where their classmates discussed principles and elements of design used and shared one thing which would improve the piece overall through constructive feedback. This group of middle schoolers from Lower Manhattan Community went above and beyond the lesson plan and created digital works of art that truly reflected various mediums of contemporary writings. 


create your own sneaker–product design

Lower Manhattan Community Middle School
Grade 8

My 8th graders took on this design challenge learning the product design process of research, sketching, designing, and presenting. The first stage of the project consisted of researching the company brand and audience they were going to design for. Next, the students needed to sketch their ideas and annotate features for their sneakers such as form, line, and textures. Then the students moved to designing their products in Adobe Photoshop where they transformed their sketches into real products for some of the top sneaker brands. Finally, students had to pitch their finished designs to myself acting as a mock company giving feedback on their design choices.



             Through my personal experience, the visual arts have played a vital role in my life transforming me into a passionate person of creativity and inquiry who wants to engage with his community. I believe that motivating my students to be visual artists that explore, ideate, and challenge themselves is an integral part of their education. I will encourage my students to be critical thinkers, ask questions, and express themselves through their own personal vision. The arts will be a tool for my students to explore the world around them from multiple perspectives. As an art educator, I will foster skills within my students to help them communicate their ideas in creating projects that meet their individual needs.

            Creating an environment that is positive, safe, and collaborative is critical for my classroom. Students will be active participants in developing their own value system and rules of engagement on how the classroom should be conducted.  This will construct a space where all students are accountable for their learning. Together will we design this open atmosphere where all students can express themselves freely and learn how to trust and respect each other.

            Designing projects that reflect my students’ differences and ways they interact with their surroundings is essential. I will create diverse experiences that speak to my students’ interests, cultural backgrounds, and the needs of their communities. This will challenge them to think more deeply about their work and ask ‘why’ when making certain decisions that will affect the message they are trying to convey. The visual arts are a tool for social change and my students will be transformed into change makers of their own communities and schools.

            Listening and be adaptive to my students’ needs is the strongest quality I bring to my teaching. Acting as a facilitator, it is important for me to play the part of the learner taking in as much information from the students. A bond will be established through this open dialog and my students will see me as a partner within their learning experience. My goal is create a collaborative environment and support my students through every step of the art making process to help them reach the pinnacle of artistic achievement.

            Throughout my curriculum, a variety of materials, mediums, technology, and tools will be used to expand the students’ knowledge. The concept of “play” will be implemented so that students’ feel engaged to explore these materials in a fun, interactive way. The students will discover an endless array of possibilities when experimenting these materials in class. They will be encouraged to take risks, without judgment, investigating the usage of different tools when creating art.

            The art room is one of the places where students can feel free to express themselves. The notions of creativity and community will be pillars in the environment we create for our classroom. Taking an integrated approach to art education infusing other disciplines is a vital part of my philosophy. Students will be inspired to speak their minds, have their voices be heard, and feel a part of an ecosystem that promotes positive change and diverse learning through the visual arts.