Hernandez Students Define “Community” Through Photography

By Anna Joranger

What do you get when you stick a masterful media artist into 6th and 7th grade classrooms? In the case of Albany Park’s Hernandez School, the answer lies here!

UG teaching artist Oli Rodriguez challenged his students to display their community from their own perspectives. They spent some obligatory hours in the classroom, of course – talking about photography techniques, cameras, looking at sample artwork. And they asked questions about community: “What does community mean to me? How can we visually document a neighborhood?”

But hey, it was a beautiful spring, so what better way to learn than to get out and do? Students took things into their own hands and marched out into the world. They observed, photographed, then edited and uploaded, and the results are pretty gorgeous.



So what did the students get out of this other than an extended recess, you ask? We have answers!

88 percent of students said that this program helped them think about how the things they learn in the classroom can contribute to a successful future.

76 percent of students said that they think more creatively.

69 percent of students said they are better at learning from criticism.

65 percent of students said they are now better at working on a team with people different than themselves.

Thanks Oli, and thanks Hernandez students for the fantastic photos!