Nikki Jarecki began teaching 6th-8th grade art at Orozco in 2012. She previously worked as an English teacher in Nagoya, Japan and at Chicago’s Walter Payton High School where she taught Art 1, Digital Media Arts, and Photography first as a student teacher and then as a temporary assigned teacher. She believes that art is a tool for powerful communication, social justice, and democracy as it has the potential to give everyone a powerful voice. Her work at Orozco has demonstrated this passion as she has brought additional funding and support by partnering with community organizations, teaching artists, and museums to bring a variety of expansive opportunities to our children. Her active roles include: Ambassador of The Field Museum, Orozco’s Arts Liaison, Orozco’s Magnet Cluster Lead Teacher, technology and arts integration research with ATLAS/CAPE, two time Creative School’s Fund Grant recipient, Partner with the Changing Worlds Organization on yearly Peacemaking Projects, and continuing participant with the Teacher Fellowship Program with Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art.
Ms. Jarecki is a celebrated visual artist and illustrator was recently commissioned to paint a mural at the University of Chicago’s Smart Museum of Art where she applied specific local birds and a wolf as metaphor for communication and belonging. She is a freelance illustrator and creates work for branding and publication for several clients including: The Field Museum, Off Color Brewing, Star Chefs, and City Creatures: Animal Encounters in the Chicago Wilderness.
In her free time she enjoys exploring the world especially tropical islands, birdwatching, practicing yoga, cooking, and making art just for fun.