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Jazz it up with Artist Romare Bearden

March 9, 2022 | Sossi Essajanian

 American painter Romare Bearden was one of the most important African American artists of the 20th century. He is best known for his collages, which he created largely from painted paper, magazine clippings, and bits of fabric. Bearden’s works vividly capture aspects of American black culture. In addition to being an artist, Bearden was an art historian, teacher, composer, and author.

During the study, children were provided with multiple means for engaging in content learning and displaying their knowledge.

Bearden was also a songwriter and book illustrator. He occasionally designed sets for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Company. Jazz music was one source of inspiration for Romare Bearden and this inspired the children to think about music and to dance, dance, dance!

The children also became inspired by Romare Bearden’s early work of row house drawings. So they took a trip outside to do some observational drawing of row houses near the school.

Then the children worked inside to continue observational drawing from photographs of row houses around Hoboken.

Then they took their drawings and created plates for printing.

Printmaking features the creation of a plate from which multiple images can be produced using a brayer and ink.

Sossi Essajanian

Teacher, Sky Class

Sossi Essajanian is excited to continue her teaching and learning journey at the Mustard Seed School. She began teaching at the United Nations International School where she worked with children and colleagues from around the world. This inspired her to take a primary teaching position abroad in Nicosia, Cyprus, where she lived and worked for two years.

Ms. Essajanian has a passion for supporting children’s social/emotional skills and learning through a loving and caring classroom community. These are built on creating shared understandings and opportunities for children to identify and express their feelings and of those around them. She believes in creating experiences through pair and group work where learning blossoms through social experiences.

Ms. Essajanian also enjoys reading and talking about books and continues to pursue her second passion: editing. She’s worked in various editorial capacities in newspapers, magazines, and books. She was recently excited to serve as the development editor of a children’s book about engineering and is looking forward to leading some tinkering investigations of her own with her students!

In her free time Ms. Essajanian runs, swims laps, and likes to take long walks to explore the world around her.

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