RISE 17 and RISE 18 both made field trips to the Colored Girls Museum this month. “The Colored Girls Museum is a memoir museum, which honors the stories, experiences, and history of Colored Girls.”
The museum can be found in Ms. Vashti Dubois’s home, in the Germantown area of Philadelphia. Ms. Dubois explains the reason for using the term “colored girl” – “I am interested in how people react to it based on their history with the word their understanding of it– the visceral feeling it elicits. We don’t/won’t all have the same response to it—there is a feeling at least for me that gets stirred up when I think about my “colored girl experiences” mostly its how I have literally been altered / changed “colored” by certain events throughout my life.”
RISE 17 visited with a focus on Advocacy, reflecting on questions such as: “Why is it important to understand a person or issue well, to be a strong advocate? How do you tell someone’s story and advocate for them in an informative and persuasive way? What are a few important skills, tools, or strategies needed to be a strong advocate?”
RISE 18 visited with a focus on Voice and self-expression, and the importance of storytelling in understanding our roots. Students reflected on questions, such as: “Why is it important to be a strong storyteller when sharing about yourself? How do you tell your story in an informative and persuasive way, to connect with others?”
Students were treated to a guided tour by Ms. Dubois and contributing artist, Intisar Hamilton. They studied a wide variety of artisitic representations- oil paintings, photography, carvings, dolls, mixed media portraits, murals, sculptures, and more. Students asked a lot of questions, shared observations and personal connections to the exhibits, wrote reflections in journals, and took a lot of photos of their own!
Our trip to the Colored Girls Museum was insightful and inspiring, for our work this year.