Binnsmead Middle School Programs (1997-2001)
Hope: The Youth Radio / Literacy Project
In ’97-’98, MediaRites taught residencies to 40 of the 8th grade English as a Second Language students at Binnsmead. The students represented 17 different countries and nationalities and this project provided the only arts program at their school.
The residencies in radio production, creative writing, illustration, and music created a book of poetry, essays and art illustrations as well as an evening of cultural performances that drew 300 people. The project resulted in an award-winning one-hour radio documentary that aired on National Public Radio stations during October 1998.
During the ’98-99 academic year, the MediaRites Arts Program brought 14 professional artists in performing and visual arts to teach an after-school program at Binnsmead Middle School.
Home: Arts Program
Located in a Southeast Portland neighborhood with the highest percentage of children living in poverty in Portland, Binnsmead has no arts programming. The MediaRites Arts Program brought 14 professional artists to offer more than 100 at-risk youth free classes in theatre, dance, painting, sculpting, video, and creative writing. MAP was the only professional arts training for youth in Southeast Portland through generous grants from the Regional Arts and Culture Council’s Neighborhood Arts Program and the Oregon Arts Commission Arts Reaching Youth Initiative.
Teacher In-Service Residencies
In the’99-01 academic years, the MediaRites Art Program has been following through with special teacher in-service training residencies led by Ping Khaw-Sutherland to help educators develop and incorporate visual arts, creative writing, theatre and radio into their educational curriculum. This residency is funded by the Regional Arts and Culture Council’s Artsplan 2000 -2001 program. For the last two years, Binnsmead was able to participate in the Procession of the Species parade for Earth Day. With the help of Sutherland, teachers now know how to use the visual arts in their classrooms to teach ecology and environmental sciences. These two years of teacher in-service residences was made possible by the Regional Arts and Culture Council ArtsPlan grants.