Shepherd Elementary School
District of Columbia Public Schools, Washington, District of Columbia
Joele Michaud, Art Teacher, 5th grade
In a teaching unit that was designed to combine language arts and visual arts curriculum, fifth-grade students in Joele Michaud’s art class at Shepherd Elementary studied the elements of narrative such as characters, plot, and setting. Simultaneously they learned about the life of Jacob Lawrence and the story he told in The Migration Series. Students then wrote four-sentence stories about themselves, their families, and their experiences. These young artists illustrated each sentence of their stories with mixed-media, colored drawings in the abstracted style of Lawrence to create four-framed, illustrated narratives. During the process, they continuously checked their written and visual work for simplicity, clarity, and consistency.