By FEDALIS GRULLON, age 10

Fedalis with her anti-police brutality protest art. PHOTO: DreamYard Project
Fedalis with her anti-police brutality protest art. PHOTO: DreamYard Project

Have you ever experienced injustice? Throughout my experience of being at DreamYard Art Center, I’ve learned a lot about being kind to others, having respect for my friends and, most importantly, standing up against injustice.

During our Empower Half Hour sessions once a week, the DreamYard Art Center staff has been teaching kindergarteners through fifth graders about the injustice that Michael Brown faced in Ferguson, MO. We’ve also talked about the protests against police violence that have been occurring around the nation.

We decided to join the movement by working together to make one big protest to show that even though we are kids, we are concerned with the killing of innocent people. My class of fourth and fifth graders are drawing portraits of people of color who were killed by police officers. Our portraits were inspired by the artwork of artist Emory Douglas, who created illustrations for The Black Panther newspaper in the 1960s and ’70s. I chose to draw a portrait of Jesse Hernandez, a Latina teenager who was killed by Denver, CO, police in January 2015.

It was exciting when my teachers Mr. Hector and Ms. Ava told us that we were going to help change things happening in our country with our own protest. I was really hoping to be a part of the demonstrations in Ferguson, but our protest is important because it’s something that we chose to do, and it uses art to show that kids are paying attention to what’s happening in the world.