Michelle’s Workshops for Videregående and Ungdomsskole Students

 The 1619 Project—America’s Origin Story Revisited 
To honor the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans to the shore of colonial Virginia, the New York Times released the 1619 Project. Through a series of essays, creative texts, and supplementary materials, the project documents how the legacy of slavery resides in contemporary American life, from health care to music to the prison system. In this workshop, students read and discuss selections from this reframing of American history. This interactive presentation includes small group work and is for advanced English speakers. Content supports interdisciplinary topic 2.5.2 Democracy and Citizenship. 

This is America—Music as Social Statement 
Childish Gambino’s music video “This is America”* has garnered international acclaim and won numerous awards, including Grammys for song and video of the year in 2019. In this workshop, students analyze the cultural and historical symbolism in the video and explore its messages about race and gun violence in America. This interactive presentation is for intermediate to advanced English speakers and supports the interdisciplinary topic 2.5.2 Democracy and Citizenship. *Due to its graphic nature, please preview the video to determine its suitability for your students. 

Seeing White in U.S. Media 
By 2044, non-Hispanic whites are projected to become a minority for the first time in the U.S. This increasing diversity has led to a new awareness and anxiety about what it means to be white in America. In this workshop, students explore the invention of whiteness and analyze how race-based privilege and power is communicated and maintained in U.S. news media and politics. This interactive presentation is for students comfortable discussing difficult topics and have intermediate to advanced English skills. Content spports the interdisciplinary topic 2.5.1 Public Health and Life Skills. 

“At Risk” Youth: Student Wellbeing in U.S. Schools 
“At risk” is used in the U.S. to describe students who are in danger of school failure for reasons such as homelessness, poverty, illness, abuse, trauma, parenthood, disability, and crime. In this workshop, I share my experiences as an “at risk” adolescent as well as my years teaching “at risk” students in California and New Mexico. We discuss how wellbeing is absent in most U.S. schools and curriculum and how this impacts the learning and health of American teenagers. This interactive presentation can be adapted for all English levels and supports the interdisciplinary topic 2.5.1 Public Health and Life Skills. 

My New Mexico Diary 
The 47th state, New Mexico or “Land of Enchantment” has been my home for eighteen years. In this workshop I share personal photos, video, and experiences and provide an insider perspective on the diverse cultures and languages that make this region so unique. Students learn about local foods and folklore and the Indigenous and Hispanic populations who have lived here since before NM became a state. This interactive presentation can be adapted for all English levels and supports the interdisciplinary topic 2.5.3 Sustainable Development. 

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