X began working in the classroom as a 2014 Teach For America Corps Member in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. They taught a variety of subjects within the Humanities, including literature and history, and made sure to develop a curriculum that was culturally responsive and historically accurate. As a Special Education teacher, X became interested in redesigning the elements of education to create more holistic, affirming, and accessible classrooms. During this time, they coached the spoken word team at the school and brought them to Louder Than A Bomb, a regional slam poetry competition. After obtaining their Master’s degree of Special Education in 2016, X continued on to work with LGBTQ+ youth experiencing homelessness at the Puerto Rican Cultural Center in Chicago. Here they continued to develop methods in which creativity and mindfulness practices (journaling, yoga, meditation, active listening through music) could be used for healing trauma and manifesting community.
They are excited to continue onward with Green Generations, particularly by exploring the way creativity could be harnessed to build connection, empathy, and appreciation for our stories and each other. Artistically, X has worked as an actor, musician, and writer, and passionately believes in the power of the pen as a method for resisting erasure of marginalized groups and building connection across divides. Pulling from the theoretical frameworks of Angela Davis, bell hooks, and Paulo Freire (among others), X approaches their work with youth from an intersectional lens and an anti-colonial mindset. In order to be the best educators we can be, we must create safe classrooms where revolutionary learning occurs — namely, where students feel comfortable exploring their minds and identities, as well as the instrumental role they each play in modifying the fabric of our society.