Contemporary art program for students in San Diego.

The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego has a special Extended School Partnership (ESP) program for local 6-12th-grade students. Teachers have the opportunity to expose their students to contemporary art in partnership with the museum.

Students are taught about art making, collaboration and, according to a new sign posted near MCASD’s downtown location, their own identity, solidarity and activism. (As someone who is passionate about writing, I hope there’s an emphasis on personal freedom, truth-seeking and authentic creativity–not politics or propaganda.)

Yesterday I took a photograph of this sign in the breezeway between downtown’s Santa Fe Depot and the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego. The two art panels were created by local students at Valhalla High School.

Read the sign if you’d like to learn more about this program.

(Click this photo to enlarge for easy reading.)
(Click this photo to enlarge for easy reading.)

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San Diego students learn STEM through aviation!

Cool aircraft are displayed during an event at Gillespie Field by Air Group One of the Commemorative Air Force.
Cool aircraft are displayed during an event at Gillespie Field by Air Group One of the Commemorative Air Force.

Today I headed to Gillespie Field in El Cajon and checked out an Expo organized by Air Group One of the Commemorative Air Force. As I walked among all sorts of restored World War II aircraft and a wide variety of fascinating exhibits, I made a very cool discovery!

Students in San Diego are invited by Air Group One to participate in a special aviation-themed STEM educational program! The special program is designed for middle and high school aged youth. Ricardo Sevilla, the friendly A-STEM Educational Officer, walked over to introduce himself to me, and I learned a little bit about this truly amazing opportunity.

S.T.E.M subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math) can be taught to students in San Diego classrooms or at Air Group One’s super cool Gillespie Field headquarters, where there are a variety of potential hands-on activities. Topics that are featured include how to become a pilot, how to operate a drone, how to build a rocket, and the aerodynamics and design concepts that enable an airplane to fly. Potential careers in aviation and the aerospace industry are also introduced. Sounds like lots of fun!

Are you a teacher in San Diego who’d like to learn more? Wouldn’t your students be thrilled to visit an actual airfield? Check out this page of the Air Group One website!

Banner promotes Air Group One's Aviation Educational Programs.
Banner promotes Air Group One’s Aviation Educational Programs.
Air Group One's historic 1943 SNJ-5 "Sassy" on the tarmac at Gillespie Field.
Air Group One’s historic 1943 SNJ-5 “Sassy” on the tarmac at Gillespie Field.
Flyer describes an exciting ASTEM educational program offered by Air Group One.
Flyer describes an exciting ASTEM educational program offered by Air Group One.
If you're interested, use the email shown in this photograph.
If you’re interested, use the email shown in this photograph.
Learning about aviation can help a student take flight and discover new horizons!
Learning about aviation can help a student take flight and discover new horizons!

I’ll be blogging about today’s fantastic event at Gillespie Field as soon as I get my photographs together!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Refugee students learn job skills at city farm!

Refugee high school students grow and sell vegetables in North Park. They are Youth FarmWorks interns receiving a helping hand from the International Rescue Committee!
Refugee high school students grow and sell vegetables in North Park. They are Youth FarmWorks interns receiving a helping hand from the International Rescue Committee!

I was walking around North Park yesterday when I stumbled upon a small farm on a dirt lot north of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. I crossed 30th Street to see what was going on, and noticed a bunch of youth working the soil, and sitting at a table selling vegetables!

It turns out these super friendly new San Diego residents are refugees attending local high schools. As Youth FarmWorks interns they are learning job skills and gaining confidence in their new country. This urban farming project was created by the International Rescue Committee, which helps refugees adjust to life in the United States, where they are safe and free from persecution.

I was given a tour of the small farm by a super cool young man–he’s the guy who gave me a thumbs up in that first photo! He showed me the various vegetables they were growing, including different types of lettuce, beets, squash, cherry tomatoes, and much more. My tour was awesome!

Good luck to everyone!

Sign by the large vegetable garden reads Youth Farm Works - Job Training Urban Farm.
Sign by the large vegetable garden reads Youth Farm Works – Job Training Urban Farm.
Many large planters contain all sorts of growing vegetables.
Many large planters contain all sorts of growing vegetables.
Kids at work on the urban farm.
Students at work on the urban farm.
A very cool smile!
A very cool smile!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Help high school students Build a Miracle!

Members of the Helping Hand Club of Mt. Carmel High School raise funds in Balboa Park for Build a Miracle.
Members of the Helping Hand Club at Mt. Carmel High School are raising funds for Build a Miracle.

Students belonging to Mt. Carmel High School’s very cool Helping Hand Club would like you to help Build a Miracle!

Today I came across a bake sale in Balboa Park. Two very generous MCHS students had a table full of brownies and other treats; they were raising donations for Build a Miracle, a charity that constructs and furnishes homes for needy families in Mexico. Between 1999 and 2014, Build a Miracle has built 185 homes and 3 community centers. They have touched literally thousands of lives, offering hope and a pathway to a brighter future.

Should you wander through Balboa Park and see smiling members of the Helping Hand Club, perhaps you could offer your own hand! Or check out the Build a Miracle website and see if you’d like to help!

Two awesome students are working to make the world a much better place.
Two awesome students are working to make our world a better place.
Donations welcome. Help us reach our goal to build and furnish a house in Mexico.
Donations welcome. Help us reach our goal to build and furnish a house in Mexico.

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San Diego school students do amazing things!

This Italian chalk art will be admired by tens of thousands on Sunday.

While wandering about San Diego taking photos for my blog, I’ve often been privileged to see school students doing really amazing things. From the very young to the college-aged, youth in San Diego are accomplishing more than just learning. They’re creating public art, publishing amazing work, beautifying the community, becoming champions, serving neighbors and people around the world, and working to build a brighter future.

Here are some past blog posts that provide inspiration.

Please click:

Students interview veterans for USS Midway exhibit.

High School students create cool graphic novel!

San Diego museum honors Little League Champs!

School students create amazing chalk art at Festa!

Urban Corps mural shows an optimistic future.

Help Westview High School Music Outreach succeed!

Kids explore science, engineering at STEM event.

Murals of San Diego history in an Old Town alley.

San Diego kids paint beautiful tile benches.

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High School students create cool graphic novel!

Thoughtful, talented young artists create a graphic novel using imagination and creativity.
Thoughtful, talented young artists create a graphic novel using imagination and creativity.

I made a very cool discovery!

A local high school had an intriguing exhibit in Balboa Park yesterday during the big Garden Party of the Century event. The CCA Envision Conservatory for the Humanities Hummingbird Project has been launched by Canyon Crest Academy in Carmel Valley. Students are creating a graphic novel!

The four-part graphic novel will tell the story of four separate children who magically transform into a hummingbird and take flight. During each journey, the central character meets other animal friends and explores new places. The exciting stories encourage imagination and help educate the reader about culture, mythology, history and the environment.

What a fantastic, brilliant idea! Students learn, write, create art and become published all at once!

Perhaps other schools might be interested in doing something similar!

Here’s their Spirit Skies graphic novel website.

The Hummingbird Project includes a four-part graphic novel created by students at Canyon Crest Academy!
The Hummingbird Project includes a four-part graphic novel created by students at Canyon Crest Academy!
Inspiring exhibit at Balboa Park's big Garden Party of the Century event.
Inspiring exhibit at Balboa Park’s big Garden Party of the Century event.

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