Art and Activism Reflection: Looking Back on What We’ve Learned

This is the final lesson in the Art in Activism lesson series. This lesson provides the space for students to reflect on what they have learned and how they will turn their knowledge into action.
Grade Level


At the end of the lesson, students will be able to: 

  • synthesize the knowledge gained over the course of the lessons in this series, including honest reflection on the challenges in relating art to activism. 
  • reflect on how our thinking about art and activism has changed or evolved. 
  • set goals for carrying these lessons with us in future endeavors.
  • Enduring Understandings:
  • People (as artists and activists) can fight for change using art as a creative way to express themselves and what they believe in.
Essential Questions
  • How is art connected to activism?


  • chart paper 
  • pencils, markers, and/or crayons

This lesson is part of the series Art and Activism.


  • activism [ak-ti-viz-uhm] (noun)  a series of actions undertaken by people with the aim of creating change  
  • community [kuh-myoo-ni-tee] (noun)  a group of people living in the same area, such as a town or city 
  • reflect [ri-flekt] (verb) to think carefully about something


Suggested Procedure

1.  Ask students to consider what the purpose might be for reflecting over what they have learned and accomplished while thinking about the relationship between art and activism. Explain that reflection will give them a chance to feel proud of themselves and also set individual goals moving forward. They will also have a chance to understand their classmates’ experiences of the same activities, and feel as if they are part of an active learning community. 

2. Position pieces of chart paper around your classroom, each with an individual question. The questions can include: 

  • What did the mural and the lessons leading up to it teach you about art? 
  • What did the mural and the lessons leading up to it teach you about activism? 
  • What does “activism” mean to you now? 
  • How do you think art and activism are connected? 
  • What goals do you have for yourself as an artist or activist moving forward? 
  • What was the most fun, and what did you find most interesting about these lessons or activities? 
  • What was the most challenging thing for you about these lessons or activities? 

Allow students time to circulate and write their individual answers to each question. This should be a quiet activity, though students are welcome to read their classmates’ work. (Note: You can also modify these questions to suit the needs of the children in your class. For preliterate students, you may choose only 2 questions that seem most important and read them to your students before setting chart paper out. These students can illustrate or dictate their answers.) 

3. Bring students together and look over the posters they have created. Note any particular commonalities or repeated messages. 

4. Ask each student to articulate one way they hope to bring art and activism into their lives at school, at home, or in their communities. Go around the circle and allow each student to share his or her goal.

Common Core State Standards: R. 2, W.4, SL.1 

Teaching Tolerance collage of images

Welcome to Learning for Justice—Formerly Teaching Tolerance!

Our work has evolved in the last 30 years, from reducing prejudice to tackling systemic injustice. So we’ve chosen a new name that better reflects that evolution: Learning for Justice.

Learn More