Digital Story Telling: Nuestras Raíces Foto Historias

In 2015 RI Latino Arts, the parent organization of Nuestras Raíces, received funding from the ADD Fund of the Rhode Island Foundation to create digital stories based on the Latino history project.

The Nuestras Races Project Director met for six weeks with the 5th graders at the Leviton Dual Language Elementary School in Providence. Thanks to the school Principal Javier Montañez, their teacher Mrs. Perla McGuinnes, and the parents of the students, the project was overwhelmingly successful.

After a discussion about Latin American family oral traditions, students chose to celebrate their family history through art expression and by learning and celebrating the Mexican tradition of Día de Los Muertos. The activities included creating memory boxes, using family photos and artifacts. Students interviewed a family member, selected a family memento (photo, personal item or food) and then wrote about what they learned. At the end of the fifth week, students created a mini-museum outside their classroom and held an exhibition during the school’s monthly parent meeting. The students acted as “docents” as family members and other parents stopped by to view their exhibition.

The project created closer bonds: 1) in school, among the students as they shared memories/stories about their own families with each other, and 2) at home, between students and family members.

On the final week of the workshops a small group of students who did not participate in the Día de Los Muertos activities created the above video by using existing photos and text from the Latino history project.
The creation of this digital story board was made possible with a grant from the Rhode Island Foundation, ADDD Fund.
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