Stories from Little Havana: Family Migration Past, Present, and Future

Request Info

This CREATE project explores an innovative instructional design for interdisciplinary teaching and learning about migration from both local and global perspectives through the use of UM’s Cuban Heritage Collection (CHC) archives and interactive media. Leveraging cultural artifacts together with interactive media is critical for compelling and impactful storytelling in the digital age,

but primary artifacts and technology are often unavailable or inaccessible in public educational contexts. We provide these tools to both local youth and UM students in order to engage them in storytelling centered around a narrative of personal and community migration as well as the relationship between the micro and macro level causes of the phenomena. The current iteration of the project focuses on the links between cultural heritage and the environment, particularly in transnational communities like Miami, and the role that interactive media can play in conveying important messages around these issues.

Through collaborations with youth and educators, the goals of the project are (1) foster student-driven, culturally and linguistically rich learning experiences that incorporate cultural heritage artifacts into the creation of multimedia stories; (2) provide students with the opportunity to place their unique perspectives into the national and global discourse on family migration; and (3) support the development of novel curricular materials for using primary archives to support learning about migration as well as professional publications to share with other educators and researchers. With the shift to remote engagement, the project will examine broader challenges with transitioning activities that use artifacts to online environments and consider the following: How can students have community-based, resource-rich experiences in online learning environments? How can students participate in inquiry at the intersection of culture, community, and the environment from home? What resources are needed to support students in digital storytelling about community issues remotely?


Project Members:

Dr. Kahn is supported on this project by CRC staff, Dr. Martin Tsang and Ms. Amanda Moreno as well as members of the CRITICAL Lab (Community Research IniTiative for Interdisciplinary Collaboration And Learning), an interdisciplinary multisite team that includes the University of Miami (UM), University of Colorado Boulder (CU), and Florida International University (FIU).

CRITICAL Lab Members are: Dr. Jennifer Kahn and Dr. Matthew Deroo, Department of Teaching and Learning in the School of Education at UM; Dr. Meryl Shriver-Rice, the Director of Environmental Media at UM’s Abess Center for Ecosystem Science and Policy; Dr. Hunter Vaughan, an environmental media scholar-in-residence at CU, and Dr. Daryl Axelrod, Postdoctoral Associate, Department of Teaching and Learning, FIU.