New Member: Pop Culture Classroom
Pop Culture Classroom joined the Children’s Book Council in February! Read on to learn more about this exciting new member in Denver, Colorado.
PCC is an educational non-profit that uses pop culture, including kid’s comics, to inspire a love of reading. They create graphic novel teacher’s guides, organize Denver Pop Culture Con, and facilitate the Excellence in Graphic Literature awards program.
What’s your organization’s origin story?
Pop Culture Classroom was founded in 2010 as Comic Book Classroom, a Colorado charitable organization focused on enhancing and improving student’s learning experience through the use of comic books and graphic novels. At the same time, the founders of Comic Book Classroom also developed the Denver Comic Con event to serve as a primary fundraiser for our educational programs.
Since then, Pop Culture Classroom’s learning resources have expanded to include a comprehensive collection of educational comics, instructional videos, graphic novel teaching guides, pop culture-based curricula, lesson plans, and much more. In addition, through our year-round pop culture-based workshops, we provide low-cost and free programming at our on-site classroom and at events, local schools, libraries, and community organizations all across Colorado.
Each year at Denver Pop Culture Con, we provide opportunities for students, parents and educators to engage in the pop culture community through programs like the Kids’ Lab, Experience the Comix, Educator’s Day, Excellence in Graphic Literature Awards, and more than 400 hours of educational sessions offered over the 3-day convention.
What exciting projects are you working on?
In 2020, we are excited to be re-launching our Colorful History program, a series of educational comics with the goal of educating students about significant and diverse characters, events, and places from United States history. Published monthly, each 4-page comic is distributed 100% free on our website and includes all process art, the original script, and a teaching guide to support classroom implementation. Our first 3 issues of 2020 focus on the origins and cultural impact of Superman, the legacy of the Underground Railroad, and the Watergate Scandal.
In addition, we are currently working with publishers to create graphic novel teaching guides that include themes, characters, discussion questions, project ideas, and common core connections to help educators bring established graphic novels into classrooms as powerful teaching tools.
Speaking of your free and downloadable teaching guides, what’s the methodology behind their creation?
As educators who have spent time in a variety of classrooms, we know the struggles that many teachers face when developing curriculum and advocating for graphic literature in the classroom. Our teaching guides are designed to streamline that process so that teachers can get to the good part – actually teaching – while bypassing some of those barriers. We intentionally develop our guides to show educators how comics and graphic novels can be a vital gateway to multiple literacies and learning objectives, helping students engage in creative activities, build important 21st century skills, and learn exciting new career opportunities.
Thank you Pop Culture Classroom. We are thrilled to welcome you to the CBC!