Chagers's Blog

Just another weblog

About the Author

I was born in Turkey and raised in Manchester, England. As a bilingual immigrant child, I used art as a means of self expression and a way of exploring the world around me. During my adolescence I painted and spent time after school in museums. Eventually, as an undergraduate, I studied art at Edinburgh College of Art; for my degree show I combined my interests in art and art history by creating a spoof history of Edinburgh and Turkey in the style of a museum collection.

Through Indiana University’s Master’s program in Art Education with a minor in Museum Studies, I began to learn about how to teach art within a museum setting, and came to appreciate the value of facilitating young people to become independent thinkers and interpreters. As my Museum Studies practicum at the Mathers Museum , I developed a multidisciplinary ‘Tool Kit’ for the teaching K-6 students, entitled “Ramadan around the World”. The teaching resource contained power-points, lesson plans, book reviews, resources, interviews, and objects. During the Multicultural Festival (October 10th, 2009 by Lotus Indiana), I adapted some of these lessons and I trained volunteers to teach them. In November, at the 2009 annual conference of Art Education Association Indiana (AEAI), I presented a paper based on my practicum. The paper, “How to incorporate Islam into Indiana State’s K-12 Curriculum”, focused on the lack of representation of Islamic cultures within the K12 curriculum. Using an analytical framework, I proposed ‘creative’ ways of incorporating information about cultures (lslam was a sample) across the curriculum. On conference feedback forms and during informal conversations, teachers described to me the difficulties they experience in dealing with new immigrants from unfamiliar cultures. I believe that with further research and through close relationships with schools and communities in Indiana, improved methods of teaching students of minority groups, and about minority cultures can be developed; students and families can exchange and build stronger relationships.

I have enjoyed being a member of the academic community of IU during my past two years in Bloomington. Next semester, I will be holding an art exhibition in conjunction with the ‘Muslim Voices’ program of Center for the Study of Global Change, with local schools. As the president of the Turkish Student Association, I am organizing events, that are potentially art and curriculum development related. These include a campus wide multicultural art event for children (ages 2- 12) in April 2010, and a Middle East Poetry and Arts festival at the IU Art Museum for the World Poetry Day (April 2010), Bloomington World Wide Friends Folklore Dance (March 2010), participating in Batchelor Middle School’s Multicultural festival March 8th, Bloomington’s ‘Lotus’ Multicultural Children’s Fair March 2010.

As a graduate student in the art education K-12 certification program at Indiana, it is my ambition to return the knowledge, skills and experiences I have gained through my educational and life journey to others, with the hope of letting them find their own creative voices. One of the course on the certification program is a computer course(W200). This is one of the most ambitious, resourceful and hands on application courses in the program. I transfer knowledge of new software, teaching approaches, and efficiency strategies immediately into lesson plans. I find this course to be especially important in improving online learning, supplementing classroom based learning by being able to differentiate between high and low tech resources, consider multiple ways of engaging with students learning styles. This course has helped me to overcome my fears of technology, but also how to keep on learning once it finishes.


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