What's your education story?

He offered a gift of his own artwork by drawing the leader of Indianapolis Public Schools

PHOTO: Scott Elliott
Eric Best drew a portrait of of IPS Superintendent Lewis Ferebee and presented it to him.

education_story_graphicChalkbeat journalists ask the people we come across in our work to tell us about their education stories and how learning shaped who they are today. Learn more about this series, and read other installments, here.

Eric Best is an eighth grader at Edison School for the Arts, a new K-8 magnet school born from the move of the elementary arts magnet program from Indianapolis Public School 70 to the former Key Learning Community site just West of downtown. We met him after he approached IPS Superintendent Lewis Ferebee at the school’s ribbon cutting ceremony to present a drawing of Ferebee that Best had made.

Eric Best's drawing of IPS Superintendent Lewis Ferebee.
PHOTO: Scott Elliott
Eric Best’s drawing of IPS Superintendent Lewis Ferebee.

I went to School 70 for a few years and for middle school I went to Broad Ripple. But my mom wanted me to come here because my sister is going here.

That’s how I came here.

I really loved the arts in every IPS school I went to. For me in school, sometimes it’s hard to understand what the teachers are saying. but I just keep asking questions until I get to the correct answer.

Some teachers wanted me to draw Dr. Ferebee. I was really happy to do it. They gave me a photo of him.

I really love drawing a lot. I love sketching. I’m not much of a painter or that great at ceramics but I really love visual arts.

For high school I will either go back to Broad Ripple or to North Central. I really want to be an art teacher when I grow up.

What's Your Education Story?

We can’t wait for you to hear these Indianapolis teachers’ stories — join us April 19

PHOTO: Ronak Shah

Indianapolis teachers have more stories from their classrooms to share this spring.

Over the past year, Chalkbeat has brought readers personal stories from the teachers, students, and leaders of Indianapolis through our occasional series, What’s Your Education Story? Some of our favorites were told live during teacher story slams hosted by Teachers Lounge Indy.

The stories dealt with how a teacher grappled with coming out to his students, a class that organized to save historic trees in their community, and the unexpected lesson of a mouse in the classroom.

Next month, Chalkbeat is partnering with Teachers Lounge Indy, WFYI Public Media, and the Indianapolis Public Library to host a story slam. The event, 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 19, will showcase tales from across Circle City classrooms. It is free and open to the public — please RSVP here.

Event details:

5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 19, 2018
Central Library, Clowes Auditorium
40 E. St. Clair St., Indianapolis, IN
Get tickets here and find more on Facebook

It's Friday. Just show a video.

How a push to save some of Indiana’s oldest trees taught this class about the power of speaking out

PHOTO: Dylan Peers McCoy
Students working at the School for Community Learning, a progressive Indianapolis private school that depends on vouchers.

Alayna Pierce was one of seven teachers who participated in story slam sponsored by Chalkbeat, Teachers Lounge Indy, WFYI Public Media and the Indianapolis Public Library on Sept. 5. Every teacher shared stories about their challenges and triumphs in Circle City classrooms.

Pierce’s story is a letter she wrote to her second and third grade students at the School for Community Learning, a private school in Indianapolis. In it, she recounts how they came together as a class and as a community to save some of the state’s oldest trees.

Check out the video below to hear Pierce’s story.

You can find more stories from educators, students and parents here.