Mapping Lincoln Heights


View Departures Youth Voices: LA RIVER in a larger map

Last week students created hand-drawn maps of their neighborhoods, highlighting the positive and negative aspects of where they live. They were able to effectively show us the complexities of community and the entanglement of emotions attached to the spaces. Through the subjective process of designing space in terms of memory and emotion, the geographical boundaries were blurred. It is unclear in some where Lincoln Heights is situated, for example, on one map it is tangential to the LA River and on another it is adjacent to Koreatown.

This week, students identified the people and places on their hand-drawn maps and collectively annotated these places on a Google Map. By adding a geographical lens to the spaces, this process allowed for new sets of relationships to be recognized by the students. In Chinatown and Compton students had tagged their spaces using Google Maps.

This activity led to a longer discussion of the theme of community and how students can become active agents for positive change in their communities. For instance, there is a resident of Lincoln Heights who lives next door to the school and only recently has the school made a connection with him. He happens to be an extremely prominent urban farmer in Southern California. His hillside property holds the largest tomato garden in Los Angeles. Because of this new relationship, the school is developing a farming program with their neighbor, the goal being that one day, they will together be able to grow enough fruits and vegetables to sustain the entire school.

Students annotated their Google Map to highlight places like the tomato garden and many more. To view this map, click on the image below and it will pop up at the top of this page. You will be able to explore Lincoln Heights and its surrounding areas through the viewpoints of L.A. Leadership's finest.

Come back next week to hear about our upcoming photography workshop.

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