American Identity Jennifer Hankes Daniel Webster Elementary 8th Grade Language and Visual Arts and Social Science Archibald J. Motley, Jr. (1891-1981) Self-Portrait, 1920 Oil on canvas; 30 1/8 X 22 1/8 in. The Art Institute of Chicago Archibald J. Motley, Jr. Nightlife, 1943 Oil on canvas; 36 x 47 3/4 in. The Art Institute of Chicago Key information & ideas about the artworks that informed the lesson: Self-Portrait--wanted to show he was an artist and a gentleman Painted during the Great Migration and the Harlem Renaissance Negative stereotypes and few opportunities existed for African Americans in art during this time Goals for Lesson--what I wanted students to learn: Artists tell stories through the images in their work Stereotypes influence how we see others and ourselves What does it mean to be an American? One can express his/her identity through texts and illustrations A few major learning activities: Close Read: Formal analysis of Self-Portrait Research the artwork, artist, and time period Compare and contrast two different paintings (SelfPortrait and Nightlife) Compose a narrative to accompany Nightlife Create a self-portrait Short Story to accompany to the painting Nightlife Poem written to accompany the painting Nightlife Self Portrait Self-Portrait What my students learned: • “Paintings tell a story.” –Andrenetta • “Painting yourself is hard to do.” – Ronald • “I learned that paintings can be based on true events.” –Renita • “His painting [Archibald Motley’s SelfPortrait] tells a lesson about not to judge others by how they look.” –Tachetti What I learned: Lack of art experience and exposure in elementary education. Visual arts are easily integrated into language arts. American art is a great tool to grab students’ interest into a historical time period.