Austin Students Employ 21st-Century Skills

Critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and creativity aren’t just education buzzwords at Austin High School. In chatting with Mr. Brobeck after class today, he observed that students are working together and offering each other constructive criticism on this project more than he often sees in his art classes. Perhaps it’s because students, in being asked to reflect and express themselves about something as deeply personal as the loss of a loved one or a hero, take comfort in connecting with others in the class experiencing similar emotions?

Austin students collaborating on materials prep

Creativity is very evident among the Austin students. There is great variety in the people being honored with ofrendas and the imagery being used to honor them. Citlalli is researching traditional Mexican Día de los Muertos calavera imagery of José Guadalupe Posada.

Citlalli with her Posada-inspired ofrenda-in-progress

Logan had a memorable experience as kid when his mom took him to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and he discovered the work of Pablo Picasso.

Logan working on one element of his Cubist-style ofrenda dedicated to Picasso

Rachel is inspired by the distance runner Steve “Pre” Prefontaine.

Rachel's ofrenda for "Pre"

Lindsey, whose ofrenda to Jackie O. was featured here last week, made really nice progress since our last visit.

Ofrenda for Jackie Kennedy Onassis

To hear students from Austin and the other 2011 partner schools discuss their ofrendas in their own words, watch their Phase 2 (Turning Ideas Into Images) videos. Please use the comment feature to leave the students your thoughts on their video blogs.