Youth in Community

Journal of Folklore and Education

2015: Volume 2
Paddy Bowman and Lisa Rathje, Editors

About This Volume

The toolkit of Local Learning (interviewing, observation, documentation, place-based learning, cultural perspectives) proves to be both utilitarian and philosophical when authors looked at the ways our youth work, learn, and play in our communities. While our authors who teach around the globe provide articles and classroom exercises showing how youth can learn in–and from–community, youth shape the narrative arc of this issue.


Introduction: Youth in Community

In this edition of the Journal of Folklore and Education, our articles feature school and out-of-school programs that connect young people with community.

Uses of Hopscotch in Multicultural, Intergenerational Co-existence Education

Children learn the benefit of being open to their own cultural group’s or family’s traditions and how difference is to be expected and respected rather than shunned, ridiculed, or feared.

Kickflip: Expanding Digital Learning Opportunities for Skateboarders and Other Teen Subcultures

Interest-­driven, connected learning programs can benefit teen skateboarders for whom school is often not a safe or constructive learning environment.

Pen Tapping: Forbidden Folklore

Serendipity introduces university students to young students' folklore that reveals deep connections to generations of African American music and movement genres.

Building Community as a Cool Commodity: Empowering Teens as Local Changemakers

Teens explore what shapes community, celebrate its subcultures, and discover they have a role to play in fostering community and documenting and participating in its rich expressions of culture.

Discovering Community, Transforming Education

Ethnography sets metes and bounds and establishes the lenses through which people can understand themselves and others. Everyone is the expert of their own lives.

What Clicks and Sticks: A Career of Community and Media Arts Programs

Knowing what to ask about a cultural tradition or group represents why the tools and approaches of folklore, anthropology, and oral history teach vital life lessons as well as important skills.

Bridging Collaborative Ethnography and Democratic Education

Inviting students to treat their bicultural, bilingual experience as an asset in their learning brings their culture to the center of the learning process.

Questing with Alan Lomax: Michigan’s Historic Field Recordings Inspire a New Generation

An historic folksong collection with local relevance to students gives them creative voice and connects them to place through an immersive, cooperative project.

Community Building from Below-the-Ground-Up: The Co-Op Youth Council in One Tiny Ozark Town

“Success” in rural communities does not mean what young people grow up hearing–that it is impossible to make a way “here.”

The Art of Seeing: Visual Anthropology as a Road into Experience

Images evoke deep elements of human consciousness, so photo-elicitation interviews can draw out more compelling information than ordinary interviews.

Stories from Deep in the Heart

Students learn the importance of teamwork and to appreciate unique traditions found in their families and community by producing audio documentaries.

Developing Relationships with New American Communities

Passing on African dance traditions provides refugee youth in New Hampshire with a cultural lens through which to understand their personal identities more fully.

Folklife Education: A Warm Welcome Schools Extend to Communities

Increasing student participation in school by tapping into their community knowledge supports students’ cultural competency and can positively affect academic achievement.

Key Themes in This Issue

Identity, Community, History, Nature and Environment, Place

The Journal of Folklore and Education (ISSN 2573-2072) is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal published annually by Local Learning: The National Network for Folk Arts in Education. JFE publishes work that uses ethnographic approaches to tap the knowledge and life skills of students, their families, community members, and educators in K-12, college, museum, and community education.