Case Example

Designing Community Art Projects at DreamYard

Hillary Kolos, Joselina Fay, Ama Codjoe, Robyne Walker Murphy, Austin Greene, and Chelsea John - DreamYard

This podcast discussion features educators from DreamYard exploring their approach to youth-driven community arts projects. They discuss how the approach relates to design thinking models, yet draws on practices that have been present in communities of color historically.


In this podcast, educators from DreamYard, a youth-serving organization in the Bronx focused on arts-based social justice pedagogy, examine their high school based program called ACTION. During this time Joselina Fay, Youth Programs Manager, and Hillary Kolos, Director of Digital Learning, sat down with current and past ACTION staff, including Ama Codjoe, Robyne Walker Murphy, Austin Greene, and Chelsea John to discuss the process for identifying issues that are relevant to participants, looking at root causes, and then deciding on a theme for the semester or year. This process aligns with an approach that is very popular in digital learning spaces now – Design Thinking. DreamYard believes that Design Thinking shares many of the aspects of community organizing and creative youth development practices that ACTION uses. The conversation highlights those connections and lifts up the work which has been taking place – particularly in communities of color – for many years.