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Prepare for Fieldtrips, Guest Speakers, Multimedia

Get your department’s approval for field trips and guest speakers well ahead of time. Contact your Administrative Assistant for Transportation Request or Guest Speaker Honoraria forms.

Consider students with special needs: Arrange for wheelchair access or closed captioning, for example.

Before, During, and After

Whet students’ enthusiasm for and contextualize special events by setting up tasks for before, during and after the event. The tasks can be quick and easy in-class activities or detailed homework assignments—you decide what would work best. Either way, these activities should enable both you and students to see what has been learned.

Before

1. Explain how the event relates to the course content. What exactly will you expect students to do after the event? Provide background information and context.

2. Set up a specific purpose for viewing, listening or participating. Provide a list of questions, prompts or things to look for. (Example below)

3. Have students prepare using one or more of the following tasks:

a. Students write a paragraph to reflect on what they already know about the site or subject.

b. Students develop questions to ask guest speakers or field trip guides. (Deliver the questions to the speaker or guide a few days before the event, if possible.)

c. Students speculate about what they might see and hear during the visit or trip and how it might apply to their work.

During

Multimedia:

1. Dim lights, but allow enough light for note taking.

2. Have students look, listen and take notes on key info you have asked them to watch for.

3. If the piece is short and time permits, replay key segments.

Guest Speaker/Field Trip:

1. Sit among your students and take notes to model respectful attentiveness.

2. Have students look, listen and take notes on key info you have asked them to watch for.

3. Have students ask questions and otherwise engage the guest/guide.

4. Ask a few questions of your own to strengthen the bridge between the speaker/site and your course material.

After

1. Immediately afterward or during the next class session, give students a couple of minutes to write down their reactions to the guest speaker, media or field trip.

2. Allow time for discussion (in pairs, small groups, whole class) about how the event related to relevant course material.

3. Ask students to share something they found particularly interesting or surprising with their peers.

4. For homework, ask students to write a one-page response/summary. Collect it the following session.

Sample Tasks for Viewing

Drawing the Line: A Portrait of Keith Haring, 1989 (DVD)

Before:

1. What do you know about Keith Haring?

2. How would you describe his artwork?

3. What is the purpose or function of public art?

4. What types of social issues have artists addressed in their art? Name as many artists as you can and identify the issues they have addressed.

During:

1. Write down three reasons why art critics have called Haring an outsider of the art establishment.

2. What social issues does Haring address in his work? List at least two.

3. How does Haring believe public art should function? List at least two ideas.

After:

1. If Keith Haring were alive today, what social issues might he address through his art?

2. Why do some art critics think of Haring as an ‘outsider?’

3. What is your reaction to Haring’s comments about commercial art and the Pop Shop?