Juvenile Justice



Program Description:

Youth participated in uncensored poetry exercises with Professional Teaching Artist Carla Thompson once a week for 10 weeks. Once this project finished up, 30 teens participating in Community Service worked at Quincy Garden to colorize the gates and install aluminum panels with their ideas. Thanks to Professional Teaching Artist Melinda Placko, in collaboration with Partnership for Safer Cleveland and Renaissance Fairfax Development Corp, for helping to make this experience possible.

Juvenile Justice Artist Reflection / Performance Poetry:

“The six gentlemen that participated in the final performance were quite impressive.  All of them were originally unwilling to share poetry even in front of each other, and they were specifically nervous about performing in public.  For the final event, all six gentlemen: 1) dressed themselves appropriately , 2) chose poems that they had written and from other authors to read, and  3) were able to articulate to an audience of more than 20 people why they had written or chosen the poems they were presenting.  They also greeted and spoke with their audience professionally before and after the performance.”

When asked what the mural project meant to a Juvenile Justice Community Service Youth:

“It can inspire people to do more things like this around the community. Showing the neighborhood that we kids work together as one.”

Teacher comments on curricular connections:

“Pointing out cultural elements & emphasizing values fit in nicely with the school goals.”

‘The greatest strength of the workshop was the alignment with our curriculum and the manner in which the artist was able to communicate that to the students.”

“Melinda (CAL teaching artist) talked a lot about inspiration- making work that is inspired by images of space, but not replications of those images. Students were receptive to this idea and I heard several asking/telling each other about the inspiration for their own work. Loved that!”