Play is central to my work as a teaching artist, both within my studio practice and in the curriculum that I have developed for elementary to college students. I believe that play nurtures curiosity, empathy, and world-making, which empowers young people to become stewards of possibility. I have taught classes ranging from paper puppetry to portfolio and concept development in preparation for art school applications.
Developing curriculum for K-8 students that combines design thinking, embodied sculpture, and play has been my most rewarding work. These lessons, framed as design challenges, encourage students to self-advocate, engage in critical dialogue, and imagine new possibilities for a future they believe is not fixed. My goal is to co-design site-specific, interactive artworks, and projects with students that have a lasting impact on our community, building upon these workshops that create new objects and processes for temporary play.
Creating alternative learning spaces that foster student leadership, creativity, and belonging is my preferred way of working with schools. My approach is to have varying levels of complexity that can be built upon and support many student-led projects, aiming for many hands involved and a variety of entry points. I work with students to develop the habits of mind of a changemaker and to create an awareness that everything designed can be redesigned. I ask students to articulate the values behind their work and envision how they want participants to feel. I position students as experts, matching the realm of what we make to mediums they actively engage with, such as activity books, fashion, and games.
Last spring, I had the opportunity to write a blog post (linked here) about my teaching experience and an unexpected visit with President Biden for Americans for the Arts.
I am a visual artist, designer, and teaching artist based in Seattle, WA. My work as a teaching artist is driven by the desire to create inclusive and unexpected opportunities to nurture curiosity within communities. I believe that art is for everyone, and I am passionate about using arts integration curriculum and gamification as unusual entry points to reach new students. Over the past 6 years, I have worked as a teaching artist, with my most recent position being a resident teaching artist in Philadelphia from 2020 to 2022 through ArtistYear, an Americorps-funded organization that places artists in Title One schools.
In this role, I focused on building relationships that fostered trust and a shared vision among administration, staff, and students. This foundation has been instrumental in developing a design program for 4th through 8th-grade students and an arts integration model that teaches STEAM and social-emotional learning.
My recent work has centered around creating alternative learning spaces co-designed with the community. This includes a pop-up art gallery for a K-8 school in Jersey City as an Impact WrkShp Fellow and a mobile installation and site-specific drawing workshop series across King County Parks now in its third year. In 2022, I founded a design program at Luis Munoz Marín Elementary School, comprising six classes from grades 4-8, where a design club worked all year to create the Marín PlayLab, a mobile site where students could check out student-designed games, participate in workshops, or teach a project to their class for project-based lessons that I fabricated.
I have also lectured at Pratt University on the Ethics of Co-Design and written for Americans for the Arts on my teaching philosophy.