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BIOGRAPHY

Junius Wright is a Language Arts teacher at the Academic Magnet High School known for his innovative lessons and integration of art, music, and modern media into the traditional Language Arts curriculum. His unique lessons spark student curiosity, nurture discovery, and help students recognize the value of playing with what they learn. When Junius is not teaching, he enjoys Paddle Boarding, Running, and juggling (yes, he can juggle fire). He lives on Oak Island, near Charleston, South Carolina, with his wife, Tracy, and their three children Zoe, Sadie, and Sage.

SELECTED PROJECTS

The Three Dimensional Story Project 

Inspired by a school visitation by the artist, Eames Demetrios, the Three Dimensional Story Project (3DSP) is a collection of stories written by Academic Magnet creative writing students.  The stories chronicle fictional events that attempt to explain why the nearby Naval Shipyard was abandoned in the 1990's.  The project features metal markers that summarize stories “discovered” by the students at eight sites on the Naval Shipyard. In addition to the markers, visitors to the sites can use their smart phones to read QR codes and instantly view an image of a marker, text of a story, or a video clip posted on the 3DSP project webpage (www.3DSP.wikispaces.com).

The Conjure Woman Project  Writing students met with the Washington, D.C. artist, Renee Stout, and toured an exhibition of her artwork at the Halsey Institute of Modern Art in Charleston, SC.  Students used their experience to create stories and poems based on Stout's artwork.  The student works are posted on the Tales of the Conjure Woman web page (www.reneestout.wikispaces.com).

The Shoebox Project

The Shoebox Project challenges students to design and produce a piece of assemblage art and write a literary artist statement that uses literary tools to explain how individual objects in their work establishes the theme of the work.  

The Aldwyth Project

The Aldwyth Project was centered around The Aldwiki, a site featuring student's research, observations, interpretations, and creations related to works created by the artist, Aldwyth.  The student's explications and ekphrastic poems inspired by Aldwyth's works were posted on the Aldwiki webpage (www.aldwythexhibition.wikispaces.com/).  

Paper Plane People, A Shadow Puppet Show

The shadow puppet performance was written, created, promoted, and produced by students in Creative Writing and Visual Arts classes.  Students worked with the Halsey Institute artists Jumaadi and Geoffrey Cormier  to learn about the artist's creative process and learn how to create the show.  Read a full description of the project posted on the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art's web page. (View Page)

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SELECTED LESSONS

ID, EGO, AND SUPEREGO IN DR. SEUSS' CAT IN THE HAT
In this lesson, The Cat in the Hat  is used as a primer to teach students how to analyze a literary work using the literary tools of plot, theme, characterization, and psychoanalytical criticism. In the first session, students use a plot handout to identify the elements of plot and theme for The Cat in the Hat. Session Two introduces psychoanalytic criticism as students classify the characters from the story, using the Id, Ego, and Superego. Students then develop an argument stating the psychological personality for each character. They gather evidence supporting their arguments by identifying examples of indirect characterization in the text. Finally, students refine their analysis and develop an analytical essay.  (Full Lesson)

ANALYZING SYMBOLISM, PLOT, AND THEME IN DEATH AND THE MISER
Students apply the analytical skills that they use when reading literature to an exploration of the underlying meaning and symbolism in Hieronymus Bosch’s early Renaissance painting Death and the Miser. (Full Lesson)

PROPAGANDA TECHNIQUES IN LITERATURE AND ONLINE POLITICAL ADS 
Students analyze propaganda techniques used in pieces of literature and political advertisements. They then look for propaganda in other media, such as print ads and commercials. (Full Lesson)

DECODING THE DYSTOPIAN CHARACTERISTICS OF THE MACINTOSH'S 1894 AD
This lesson uses the “1984” Macintosh Commercial to introduce students to dystopian characteristics. Students analyze techniques used in the commercial and identify the comments that it makes about contemporary society. (Full Lesson)

AWARDS AND RECOGNITIONS

BEST LOCALLY PRODUCED VIDEO of 2013

Students in my Creative Writing class wrote and produced a film that featured images they created for their six-word memoirs.  Their film was voted as "Best Locally Produced Video of 2013" in the Charleston City Paper's "Best of Charleston" contest .

HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS CREATE A PARALLEL HISTORY IN THE NAVY YARD

The Charleston City Paper has featured two articles about the Three Dimensional Story Project created by my Creative Writing Students.  The first article, "High School Students Create A Parallel History In the Navy Yard", provides a general overview of the project.  The second article,  "What if the Navy Yard was the site of bizarre human testing and a mysterious outbreak?", was included in a special issue of the City Paper that explored alternative events in Charleston's history.  

Smith Magazine's Classroom of the Week, March 2012

A Smith Magazine article featured the activities that I used to help my Creative Writing students write and produce both their six-word memoirs and their Six-Word Memoir film. 

WOMEN IN RELIGION

Post and Courier article about the She Shall Be Called Woman exhibition that I curated for my student's study of the female protagonist. 

Click here to view the full article.

THE GREAT BIG PAINTINGS OF FLETCHER CROSSMAN

Charleston City Paper article about an exhibition featuring works created by our classroom artist in resident, Fletcher Crossman.

Click here to view the full article.

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ARTIST IN RESIDENT INSTALLATIONS

THE TIMPSON CLASSROOM INSTALLATION 

Two works by the Charleston artist, Ben Timpson were exhibited in my classroom and were later featured in an exhibition of Timpson's works at a local gallery.  Students created the Timpsonwiki, an online website were students posted their interpretations of Timpson's works.  

SHE SHALL BE CALLED WOMAN: Educational Consultant and Curator

The She Shall Be Called Woman exhibition featured visual works of art created by seven Charleston artists exploring the female protagonist and the role of woman in faith. Students used works from the exhibition to explore the role of the female protagonist in literature, visited the exhibition, and then wrote literary reviews about works in the exhibition. After the exhibition's close three of the works from the exhibition were installed in Mr. Wright's classroom at the Academic Magnet High School and were integrated into a unit on Paradise Lost. For more information, visit the She Shall Be Called Woman exhibition web site and read an article about the exhibition in The Charleston City Paper.  

GREAT BIG PAINTINGS: Educational consultant and Curator

Project Fusion focused on the installation of six original works of art created by Charleston artist, Fletcher Crossman. The works were installed in classrooms and stairwells at the school. During the five week installation, the works were integrated into the Creative Writing and European Literature classes through a wide variety of activities and projects. The paintings later joined other works by Crossman for his exhibition, Great Big Paintings, where words and images created by students were projected onto Crossman's canvasses transforming them into new , interpretative works of art. The exhibition was voted by The Charleston City Paper as "Best Art Gallery Show for 2009".

THE CABELL COLLABORATION: Educational consultant and Curator

A collaborative project with the Academic Magnet's 2003 artist in residence, Cabell Heyward.  The project included visits by the artist and a classroom installation of an original work created by Heyward which was later featured in an exhibition of Heyward's works.  Activities included explications written by students using their knowledge of literary tools.  The project culminated with a field trip to the exhibition, Peril Dream Promise, which featured 15 of Heyward's assemblage pieces. 

SAMPLING OF PRESENTATIONS AND WORKSHOPS

National Endowment of the Humanities Summer Institute 
One of 80 educators selected to participate in the National Endowment for the Humanities Landmarks of American History and Culture workshop: The American Skyscraper: Transforming Chicago and the Nation.  Chicago, July,  2014.

National Teacher Institute at the Smithsonian American Art Museum
One of fifty educators selected to participate in a seven day workshop held at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington D.C. in July of 2013. 

Pecha Kucha Presentation
One of six speakers selected by the Charleston Creative Parliament to present at  Pecha Kucha 18 on May 7, 2013.    

Writing Without Words, Classroom Creations for the Real World, and Fueling the Fires of Literacy: Sparking Student Curiosity and Imagination through auditory and visual media.
South Carolina Council of Teachers of English Conference, Kiawah, S.C. 2010, 2011, and 2013. 

Integrating the Arts in the English Classroom
National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention, New York, NY. 2007.

Work History

Aug 2000Present

Language Arts Teacher

Academic Magnet High School
May 2014Present 

Board Member

Allegro Charter School of Music
19992000

Social Studies Teacher

Clark Corporate Academy
19981999

Language Arts Teacher

Baptist Hill High School
19961998

Language Arts and Social Studies Teacher

The American School Of Kinshasa

Education

19931995

Masters of Arts in Teaching

The Citadel
19871991

M.A. English

College of Charleston

Certifications

2002Present

NBPTS Certified Teacher, English Language Arts                                 (Adolescence and Young Adulthood)

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards
2006Present

Gifted and Talented Certification Endorsement

South Carolina Department of Education
1996Present

English Certification

South Carolina Department of Education
2000Present

Social Studies Certification

South Carolina Department of Education

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Selected Personal Artwork

FEATURED PROJECTS

SELECTED ARTIST INTERVIEWS