Social Justice and ELT through the Visual Arts
Last March, Anna Whitcher and Kieran Donaghy presented at the GISIG and Visual Arts Circle Joint PCE. In this session , they looked at a number of resources such as projects, resource websites, lesson plans and publications which promote social justice in English language teaching, created by members of the Visual Arts Circle, a community of practice of language teaching professionals with a shared interest in the value of using the visual arts in language education.
These are the resources presented in the session:
Judy Boyle – The NO Project
The No Project
The NO Project is an award-winning, global, educational anti-slavery campaign that specifically targets youth awareness of modern slavery and human trafficking through film, music, art, dance, theatre, journalism, creative writing, education and social media. The project was set up and run by Judy Boyle.
Naomi Epstein – Visualising Ideas
Naomi Epstein is a teacher of deaf and hard of hearing children in a secondary school in Israel. She created her website Visualising Ideas to share her materials and ideas on how to use the visual arts with deaf and hard of hearing children in the language classroom.
Chrysa Papalazarou – Art Least
Art Least is a site created by Chrysa Papalazarou, an English teacher from Greece who works in a state primary school. Her site explores ways of using art in English language teaching and learning, promoting social justice, and a more thoughtful and creative flow in the English classroom
Linda Ruas – Easier English Wiki
Linda Ruas – Easier English Wiki
Linda Ruas is a trainer of ESOL teachers and an ESOL teacher at a London college. She is also Joint Coordinator of IATEFL Global Issues SIG.
The Easier English Wiki provides the same texts and photos that New Internationalist magazine offers, but with easier vocabulary and grammar. This content covers the issues many English language students are living with or experiencing, or issues that are vital to understand in today’s world. Learners can learn English, reading the simplified article and then the original, develop critical thinking and visual literacy skills, and break down barriers at the same time.
Kieran Donaghy – Film English
Kieran Donaghy is a teacher, trainer and writer based in Barcelona. His website Film English has a large number of lesson plans designed around short films which promote social justice and universal values such as compassion, kinness and equality in the language classroom.
The Image in English Language Teaching (ELT Council)
Edited by Kieran Donaghy and Daniel Xerri
The book can be downloaded for free:
The Image in English Language Teaching is the first publication of the Visual Arts Circle in collaboration with the Maltese ELT Council. It’s a collection of 18 chapters inspired by talks at the first five editions of the Image Conference. Two chapters are on how art can be used to promote peace and social justice in the language classroom:
Peace art: words and images interwoven
by Magdalena Brzezinska
Images on canvas: art, thinking and creativity in ELT
by Chrysa Papalazarou
For anyone interested, here is their powerpoint presentation and description.Social Justice and the Visual Arts in English Language Teaching Handout