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ERIC Number: EJ977703
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 15
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 43
ISSN: ISSN-0360-9170
"Mano a Mano": Arts-Based Nonfiction Literacy and Content Area Learning
Bryce, Nadine
Language Arts, v89 n3 p179-193 Jan 2012
At the James Weldon Johnson Leadership Academy in East Harlem, New York, administrators, teachers, students, families, and community-based artists worked together to create a visually explosive environment that reflected enriched learning experiences based on their multidisciplinary study of New York's history. The Mano a Mano ("Hand to Hand" in English) project reflects the values of a unified, collaborative school community that approaches education and learning from the perspective that "it takes a village to raise a child" (African proverb). This arts-based, interdisciplinary, and thematic approach to curriculum emphasizes visual texts, nonfiction literacy, and content area learning in pursuit of a deeper, richer understanding of a topic. The topic changes year by year, but the approach remains the same. The curriculum integrates all subjects (e.g., science, social studies, English language learning, English language arts, technology, art, music, and the performing arts), and the current unit and theme, a study of "New York: Past, Present, and Future," to provide curricular vision for teachers and children in all grades. This article features examples of children's work related to "New York's Past": displays of Henry Hudson's voyage to New York in 1609; Lenape people, whom Hudson encountered on his trip; and animals prevalent at that time. Children's work samples were reviewed as a part of a larger case study of the school's implementation of this unique arts-based, nonfiction inquiry, and content area curriculum. Of particular interest is the role of the visual arts as a means for developing children's understanding of the world and promoting literacy through nonfiction materials. (Contains 12 figures.)
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York