When youth are given tools to engage new technologies in creative ways, they move from passive consumers to critically engaged creators. Hands-on creative projects allow students to develop new skills, invest themselves in their work and become their own advocates. We live in a world saturated with digital music and media but a lot is happening beyond Garage Band and basic looping -- young people are aware of this but are rarely exposed to the available tools or given the chance to explore new possibilities.
In the 2011 Winter-Spring Semester NEXMAP and June Jordan School for Equity teamed up to pilot a dynamic 14-week New Media Elective in Sound and Technology. During this class students explored Sound, how it surrounds us, how it can be manipulated to make music, and how the process of reformulating sounds can offer new ways of experiencing our surroundings. Thanks to a December Kickstarter.com campaign that raised $5,217 to pay instructors and materials, and in-kind support from Reaper Software and zzounds.com , NEXMAP was able to purchase tools and software and bring new media artists into the classroom.
The New Media elective offers an engaging and rigorous curriculum based on a combination of theory, hands-on workshops, and creative projects aimed at de-mystifying the use of audio and video production software. Students learn directly from professionals in the field and have the chance to experiment, collaborate, create and explore with sound and technology. Classroom work was based on the following topics and activities:
For more detail on the class this semester, visit the course blog.Professional Artists/Teachers: By bringing established artists into the classroom to present their work, share their process and lead workshops, June Jordan students were exposed to role models and learned applicable skills for personal and creative expression.
Based on the study of sound and new technologies through arts projects, this course culminated in a performance and presentation at the Meridian Gallery. Students who have taken our class showcased their work, shared their thoughts on what they learned and played some music in a free public presentation.
NEXMAP is currently seeking funding and additional community partners to support this Inside Out (I/O) initiative as a yearlong program at June Jordan and other schools in San Francisco.
Please consider a donation today.