UTOPIA AND IMAGINARY WORLDS
21 students, 4th, 5th, and 6th grade, Samaniego School, Vitoria-Gasteiz
Teachers: Miren Jasone García, Maria José Egiluz, Itsasne Larruskain
Artist: Ibon Sáenz de Olazagoitia
Main curricular subject: Social Studies
Languages: Basque, Spanish
In this school, LTA was combined with EUSLE, a recently-added pilot project to promote Basque language immersion among 4th-, 5th-, and 6th-grade students. By combining the two programs, art was used as a tool for integration and adaptation to language and the environment. The situations experienced by this diverse group included a boy from Ukraine acting as ambassador and interpreter for those of his countrymen and women arriving in Vitoria-Gasteiz, among them, two young Ukrainian refugees who came to the school and joined the program.
The concept of utopia was the starting point. First of all, the course analyzed the current situation in Vitoria-Gasteiz and in the school, gradually broadening their horizons to encompass the world and the planet. Then, the students were asked to imagine a utopian world in an ideal future, each making their own positive contribution.
In order to represent the city they lived in as it was and gain a better understanding of it, they drew maps of Vitoria-Gasteiz, focusing on different areas using both paper and clay. Then, they moved on to the Earth and the universe.
After map drawing, the class discussed the meaning of utopia and wrote down phrases describing the world in the future. The result – a highly personal yet collective vision of a desired future – was kept in fortune cookies made of clay. Inspired by the imaginary worlds they were familiar with from books and films, the students also designed means of transport, flags, and currencies for their utopian world.