Vashti is one of the students who participated in MOCA's Voice of the People, an innovative, literacy-based educational arts initiative that hones critical thinking and communication skills as it develops a deeper understanding of contemporary art. Voice of the People serves fourth-grade students at Title I schools. During several visits to MOCA, students are introduced to the Permanent Collection, from which they select works of art that speak to them. The students analyze the works, prepare descriptive narratives, and create recordings that serve as part of the Museum's audio guide, accessible to all those who visit the galleries and view the chosen works of art.
After eight weeks of work with the Museum's educators, MOCA celebrates the results of the spring session with Reynolds Lane Elementary School. Reynolds Lane is known for its diverse population, serving students from all over the world and is an English for Speakers of Other Languages center for Duval County Public Schools. Volunteers from Deutsche Bank helped mentor the children throughout the process.
At the Voice of the People Showcase on April 16, guests may listen to the students' audio interpretations, participate in hands-on art making activities, and enjoy refreshments, including a gigantic chocolate cake! The event is free and open to the public.
Since Voice of the People focuses on enhancing writing and literacy skills, the day's activities align with the program's goals. One activity, “It's All About Me,” prompts students to write their favorite movie, two things they're good at, and a favorite animal. Once completed, students can wear them around the Museum and the rest of the day with pride. Another activity is a spring-inspired bookmark that resembles a kite. Students choose their color palettes, color the kites, and assemble. The bookmark is perfect for summer book list reading.
Guests may explore the galleries to view Time Zones, In Living Color, Project Atrium: Shinique Smith, Amer Kobaslija: A Sense of Place, and Rock Paper Scissors. Don't forget to play in the hands-on area of the Art Explorium!