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Remixing the Humanities

The Flynn presents

A Talk by Aysha Upchurch Remixing the Humanities How the Arts Can Help Embed Habits of Equity in the Classroom & Curriculum

Flynn Main Stage

  • Friday, May 15, 2020, 5:00 PM

FREE, open seating
Open to educators, administrators, and teaching artists.
Questions? Please contact Lauren Genta
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This current generation of young people is being called the most diverse in US history. Yet, are we designing truly equitable learning contexts and experiences reflective of the shifting demographics? To move beyond merely acknowledging diversity, educators and systems leaders have to examine where and how equity and inclusion can inform mindsets and habits—so that students, teachers, and communities see each other, and the world that exists in the classroom and beyond, with renewed clarity, understanding, and purpose.

Attendees at the keynote will hear how humanities curricula can provide potent avenues to redesign how teaching and learning can embrace and leverage diversity beyond a checklist mentality. Participants will glean strategies that shake up outmoded approaches, shift power dynamics, and reshape classrooms as places where rigor, equity, and joy can co-exist.


Aysha Upchurch, the Dancing Diplomat, is a seed planter and soil agitator who creates, facilitates, and designs for radical change. This translates to her working as a sought after performer, instructor, and education consultant whose work sits at the nexus of youth advocacy, social justice, and transformative education. She has spoken at national conferences about artfully designing classrooms centered around equity and cultural relevance, the importance of dance and movement in education, and embracing hip hop as a powerful literacy and cultural lens in schooling.

Youth advocacy and hip hop culture runs throughout her work as an artist and educator. While based out of Washington, DC, she founded and directed the award-winning dance ensemble, Life, Rhythm, Move Project. In 2007, she was commissioned by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to create Am I On?, evening-length hip-hop work that explored the space between youth and adult voices, standardized testing, and school shootings. The work exemplified her commitment to use hip-hop dance to entertain, educate, and empower.

Aysha holds an MA in international peace and conflict resolution from American University and a master's in education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She has been on faculty at George Mason University, Howard Community College, and Salem State University. Aysha is currently on faculty at Harvard, where she is teaching new courses on hip-hop education and embodied learning, as well as launching and directing HipHopEX—a collaborative lab for high school and graduate students to experience, explore, and experiment with hop-hop arts in education. Whether on the stage or in a classroom, Aysha is on the move to crush borders and show how hip-hop and movement education are D.O.P.E. (dismantling oppression and pushing education).

Funded in part by the .

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  • 802 86-FLYNN
  • 802-863-5966, V/relay
  • FlynnTix
  • 153 Main Street, Burlington, VT USA 05401
  • Monday-Friday 10am-5pm, Saturday 11am-4pm