Calligraffiti: The Art of Language

Language learning at Gann is as much about immersing yourself in cultural experiences as it is about mastering vocabulary and grammar. Recently, Gann's Arabic students enjoyed a uniquely immersive experience.

Last week, Gann welcomed the esteemed Islamic calligrapher Hajj Wafaa to campus as part of an ongoing Arabic III unit on the use of calligraphy as an expression of identity. Throughout the unit, students have been researching the history, purpose, and forms of Arabic calligraphy.

For the culminating project, the class will explore calligraffiti, a contemporary art movement found across the Arab world that combines calligraphy and street art. In collaboration with the Art Department, the students will design and paint their own calligraffiti on the walls of Gann. "It's exciting that our students can engage in self-expression about their Jewish identities, in Arabic, on the walls of the school," said Arabic teacher Lucy Thiboutot.

These works of art, as is the case for most calligraffiti around the world, will be temporary—the walls will be torn down this summer as part of the Innovation Center expansion. But, the lessons learned will continue indefinitely!

Learn more about Gann's World Language offerings on our website.
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