Steps for Helping Students Become Activists - A Teen's Advice
by Melivia Mujia
Recent high school graduate Melivia Mujia shares her experience as a high school student and finding her own voice as an activist confronting institutional injustice.
When Melivia and her peers saw issues in their schools, such as LGBTQ mistreatment and student depression, they took it upon themselves to raise awareness of these matters and helped the adults in their schools confront their prejudices and improve conditions for the good of their students.
Through the efforts of passionate young student leaders like Melivia, real change can occur. Activism allows students to hone their academic skills and apply them in a real-life context where they see firsthand the positive impact of their efforts.
Building a STEM Identity through the Chief Science Officer Program
Lexis Ratto & Kelly O'Kane
Many young students let go of their STEM interests because they do not identify with the degrees and careers they see as associated with STEM fields. Though a student's STEM identity is fragile, the curiosity behind STEM pursuits has a much broader application centered around innovation.
The Chief Science Officer (CSO) program helps increase STEM interest for middle and high schoolers, especially those who are not involved in traditional STEM programs. High school students Lexis Ratto and Kelly O'Kane were San Antonio's first Chief Science Officers and were instrumental in bringing this program to San Antonio through the Alamo STEM Ecosystem.
Recent high school graduate Alyssa Diaz takes readers through her experience designing and teaching a lesson to fellow high school students during her senior year. She drew from her knowledge of Chicano literature and was excited to fill in the gaps she saw in the standard curriculum.
Through considerations of the content, her class, and the type of material that would engage them, Alyssa had a rewarding experience that solidified her belief that students want to engage with their own culture and heritage.
Recent graduate Daniela Herrejon provides insights from her own student-led lessons and how the experience greatly enhanced her investment in education. Being involved in a learning community with teachers opened dialog about how she and her peers want to learn. This built greater trust between students and teachers and inspired Daniela's passion for learning and her new interest in teaching.
Anahi Ortiz details her experiences with IDRA's Valued Youth Partnership, changing how she viewed education and making connections with other points of views through her tutees. Through helping her tutee whose attitude toward learning was similar to her own as a child, Anahi was able to connect to her own history as a student and grew as both a tutor and lifelong learner.
The IDRA EAC-South's Family Engagement Web-based Technical Assistance Package is designed to provide educators tools for embracing what, for many, is a new vision for engaging with families and community members.
The Intercultural Development Research Association is an independent private non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring educational opportunity for every child. IDRA strengthens and transforms public education by providing dynamic training; useful research, evaluation, and frameworks for action; timely policy analyses; and innovative materials and programs.
IDRA works hand-in-hand with hundreds of thousands of educators and families each year in communities and classrooms around the country. All our work rests on an unwavering commitment to creating self-renewing schools that value and promote the success of students of all backgrounds.