2022 AFS Report

Oct 10, 2022

As the national arts service organization for folk arts and education, we share to the field our activities to coincide with the American Folklore Society. Find our 2021 Annual Report available at: https://locallearningnetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/2021-LL-Annual-Report-Final.pdf and below find our 2022 activities to date.


Two websites published with your education needs in mind.
The Local Learning website offers advocacy tools that share the value of folk arts in education and resources that include learning activities and research that are searchable by theme, topic, and subject. We have also continued to maintain and update our national and regional folklife map–pointing visitors to organizations and individuals near them. We also invite all our visitors to learn more about why they might want to bring Local Learning staff and consultants into their school, museum, or community to build resources, learning activities, and deeper understanding of shared assets. Have feedback or updates you want to see on our website? Contact us.

We have invested in the Journal of Folklore and Education (JFE) as the flagship journal of Local Learning and for the field of Folklore and Education. Housed in the website JFEpublications.org, you can search by author, find full citations for the articles, browse by theme and issue, and more easily sort by subject, theme, and topic.

Announcing publication of Death, Loss, and Remembrance Across Cultures.
This volume fills a needs that we were hearing from teachers and culture workers around the nation, and considers the complex and complicated relationship(s) people have to death. Folklore can be a resource in helping heal from the trauma of loss and death while also aiding ongoing efforts to reckon with historical trauma from our shared histories. Such healing and reflection can occur through cultural practices of remembrance and the building of educational practices that promote temporal literacy.

Write for our upcoming issue on Teaching with Primary Sources.
This special issue of the Journal of Folklore and Education offers a deep dive into ethnographic primary source materials, organized around the theme “Challenging History.” Along with guest editor Sasha Antohin and our Advisory Committee drawn from the project team developed, tested, and refined Local Learning’s own Teaching with Primary Sources curriculum over the past two years in classrooms, museum settings, and with community-based learning opportunities, the JFE editors invite contributions. Access the full call here.

Have a text, website, film, or resource that you would like to be considered for review in the Journal of Folklore and Education? Please contact our Review Editor Taylor Dooley Burden at reviews@JFEpublications.org.


  • We are continuing to invest in our New York Folklore and Education Network in collaboration with New York Folklore. In 2022 we expanded our Culture, Community, and the Classroom program to two sites, offering targeted professional development to 15 artists who are then partnered with teachers in these regions for direct applications of their new knowledge and offering teachers an opportunity to learn more about the cultural expertise in their own community. This is our 5 year anniversary, and our first year to host two sites. Local Learning produced this video to celebrate 5 years of CCC.
  • We also expanded more deeply into adult education in New York, offering three gatherings for Conversations on Cultural Stewardship in partnership with folklorist T.C. Owens and The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes. Mira Johnson is our Network Coordinator. You can reach her at NYnetwork@locallearningnetwork.org.
  • Teaching with Primary Sources (TPS) is the Library of Congress premier educational program, focused on helping educators enhance students’ critical thinking and analysis skills and content knowledge using the Library’s collections of millions of digitized primary sources. Titled Counter(ing) Narratives to the American Story with Ethnographic and Oral History Collections, Local Learning is co-directing the curriculum and professional development project with the Vermont Folklife Center and our partners HistoryMiami Museum, Oklahoma State University Library and the OSU Writing Project, and the American Folklore Society. The first year included planning and curriculum development. Look for our resources to be published this year and for multiple professional development activities to happen around the nation in late 2022 through 2023, including in Oklahoma, Florida, Vermont, and at the NCSS (National Council for Social Studies in Philadelphia) and NAEA (National Art Education Association in San Antonio) conferences. Learn more, find the most recent news, and access resources as they are available at https://locallearningnetwork.org/professional-development/tps.
  • Share your updates and new resources for the Regional Resources section https://locallearningnetwork.org/resources/regional-organizations/
  • If you have news for our quarterly e-bulletins with a national audience, send us a 100-word summary with a photo. Paddy (pbbowman@gmail.com) & Lisa (lisa@locallearningnetwork.org)

Local Learning at AFS

Local Learning staff will be at the American Folklore Society Meeting in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Specific events to highlight can be found at https://locallearningnetwork.org/local-learning-at-2022-afs-meeting.

Please note that the Local Learning Workshop open to the public is happening on Thursday rather than Saturday this year. All are welcome. If you are not registered with the AFS conference, please let us know you are coming, using the registration link.


Local Learning continues to take an active role in national conversations around advocacy for arts, arts education, and folklife.

Consultancy and Cross-disciplinary presentations to increase folklore visibility

If you want to bring us to your community or organization for professional development or a project (large or small), let us know. Some examples of projects we have been engaged in for 2022 include:

  • Member of the advisory group for a professional development series awarded by the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA) to the American Folklore Society (AFS) and co-facilitated delivery of a module on Centering Equity in SAA practice with Selina Morales in April and a session on Cross-Sector Models for folklore with Reese Tanimura in September.
  • We offered a virtual professional development session for members of the Louisiana Association of Museums.
  • As a named consultant in the REACH grant from the Department of Education to the University of South Florida and Arts Schools Network, Local Learning is continuing to ensure that folk arts are included in the development of culturally-inclusive arts integration curricula.
  • CultureALL in Des Moines, Iowa, asked Local Learning to co-create new training protocol for their CultureALL Ambassador program. Twelve new Ambassadors representing diverse Iowa communities participated, along with teachers and mentor Ambassadors who also received additional leadership development through this engagement.
  • National Arts Education Association presentations for national convention (March)