Education Programs: Picturing America

Period of Performance

3/1/2009 - 3/31/2010

Funding Totals

$24,000.00 (approved)
$24,000.00 (awarded)

Picturing America: System-wide Teacher Support

FAIN: BA-50020-09

Glassell School of Art (Houston, TX 77005-1803)
Victoria Ramirez (Project Director: January 2009 to September 2010)

The applicant requested a Chairman's grant of $24,000 to run a one-day teacher training workshop that focuses on the images and themes of Picturing America (PA), together with the PA Teachers Resource Book. The workshop, to take place in September 2009, will serve 150 teachers from the Houston Independent School District (HISD), which has adopted PA system-wide. The teachers will be drawn from arts, humanities, and social studies fields, with the goal of advancing instruction in American history, civics, government, literature, and culture, to all age groups and abilities. The distinguished American collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, will receive attention for its relevance to the PA portfolio; however, the primary emphasis and the majority of time will be spent on actual PA reproductions and the Teachers Resource Book. The workshop presenters, who are well-established humanities scholars from universities across the country, will impart rich humanities content and background knowledge to participants. Training in basic visual analysis of art objects will be included. The themes of Picturing America-Leadership, Freedom and Equality, Democracy, Courage, Landscape, Creativity and Ingenuity-will inform presentations and discussions; and the workshop will devote approximately equal attention to works from the several centuries. The NEH Chairman's Grant of $24,000 will cover the total budget for running this workshop, including modest teacher stipends and working lunches, speakers' honoraria, and museum staff and facilities.

The MFAH proposes hosting a day-long workshop (9am to 4pm) in September 2009 to provide training for approximately 150 teachers from across the Houston Independent School District (HISD) system that will augment and enhance participants' use of the Picturing America resources. The workshop will combine art and historical content sessions designed to introduce visual analysis for scaffolding teaching strategies that feature the masterpieces in the Picturing America curriculum.