Friends School of Minnesota Blog

A Quaker school blog about progressive education.

Media Literacy and the Penumbra Theater Company

Friends School of Minnesota 7th and 8th graders wrapped up our Race, Gender, and Sexuality in the Media and Pop Culture unit in humanities in May. This unit challenges students to examine the role media plays in their lives, how the media constructs messages about race/ethnicity, gender, and sexuality, and how those messages impact one’s sense of identity. We center the unit around the Center for Media Literacy’s five core concepts.. Read More

Our Work on Race and Racism in 5th and 6th Grade Humanities

Over the past month, fellow middle school humanities teacher Melissa Andersen and I have been engaged with the 5th and 6th graders in some challenging, thoughtful work around race and racism in our society. It began with our field trip to the RACE: Are We So Different? exhibit at the Science Museum of Minnesota, something I recommend that everyone go and see. Before the field trip, we did some preview.. Read More

Dance Residency 2015

Friends School of Minnesota welcomed back Jae Haile Phillips and Hannah Esparza for a dance residency the during the week of October 19-23. Students in kindergarten through 8th grade learned a different social dance each day.  They explored Merengue, Bachata, Salsa, and Hip Hop. Students had the opportunity to work through basic dance moves and practiced incorporating those steps into a more intricate routine by the end of class.  As they grew in their confidence,.. Read More

From Vandalism to Public Art: A Middle School Mural Project

One spring day, a year and a half ago, I was across the street from Friends School of Minnesota in Horton Park on recess duty with our 5th and 6th graders. Horton Park is a square-block city park in the Midway neighborhood of St. Paul. It is a mini-arboretum with an open field, native gardens, and some cement picnic tables that are bordered by a cement wall that ranges from.. Read More