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Summer Archives

Mara Truslow

Nashville, TN - Martha O'Bryan Center

The overarching goal of my Faculty Fellowship was to look at the efficacy of creative writing arts education based on the measures of community development, empowerment, and creativity. The project began with two weeks of research in New York and Chicago with the New York Writers Coalition and the Neighborhood Story Project, respectively. The initial goal in this research was to understand the most effective teaching pedagogy, organizational structure, and history of arts education in and out of schools. Based on the workshops visited and conversations with organizational leaders, I returned to Nashville and the Martha O’Bryan center with a better understanding of how to create a culturally adaptive curriculum in one of the largest public housing works in Tennessee. I taught creative writing to K-8th graders for six weeks and completed a creative writing curriculum based on memoir and the story of you that was designed specifically for low-income, African American students (The Edit). The summer culminated in a research paper about the efficacy of creative writing based on all student writings, a pretest and posttest, and additional case studies collected throughout the summer.

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