Name: Matthew Menschner
School: Kensington Creative & Performing Arts High School
2018 Seminar Enrollment: History of Hollywood
My favorite TIP unit comes from the seminar that I participated in: That’s My Song! Musical Genre as Social Contract. Renae Curless wrote a fantastic unit that uses music to teach students about the Civil Rights Movement. The unit incorporates a variety of resources such as poetry, art and, of course, music. The anchor text is Warrior’s Don’t Cry by Melba Patillo Beals, which is a fantastic book. Some of the featured artists include Nina Simone, Bob Dylan, James Brown, Donnie Hathaway, The Temptations, Notorious BIG, Tupac Shakur, Lauryn Hill, and Kendrick Lamar. This unit is a creative and refreshing take on teaching students about the individual experience of the Civil Rights Movement. To quote Renae, “By providing students with a critical lens with which to analyze one seemingly ordinary aspect of their world, they will become more critical consumers and thinkers.” I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to prepare our students to think critically in today’s society, and she absolutely facilitates the development of these skills and more in her unit.
One thing I have learned through a TIP seminar is the efficacy of varied and research-based curricula. TIP affords Fellows and teachers around the country the opportunity to take a set of diverse, curricula and educate students in ways that I believe would be drastically more difficult without the hard work Fellows have employed in writing their units. In teaching the unit I wrote last year, I observed a noticeably higher level of engagement, achievement and overall passion for the content among my students. After writing a curriculum unit that incorporates musicology into my practice, I now find myself using a myriad of resources in my unit & lesson planning. My students thoroughly enjoy analyzing music, poetry, art and more, and it allows them to bridge the gap between the content and their own real-world experiences. I feel that I have far more success incorporating diverse materials and facilitating authentic learning experiences due to my time in TIP.
Our Teacher Representatives
|Carambo||Cristobal||Girls High School|
|Flores||Nicole||Mitchell Elementary School|
|Larese||Tia||Penn Alexander School|
|Mason||Bridget||Academy at Palumbo High School|
|Menschner||Matthew||Kensington Creative and Performing Arts High School|
|Phillips||Eual||Hill-Freedman World Academy|
|Schear||Amanda||Kensington High School|
|Umoren||Wendi||Tilden Middle School|
|Wildman||Terry Anne||Alexander McClure Elementary School|