We understand that everyone learns differently, so our tours offer a large range of teaching strategies. We facilitate student-driven conversations around artworks using a combination of Harvard Project Zero’s Visible Thinking and Artful Thinking strategies accompanied by various hands-on and multimodal activities, such as movement, improv, drawing, and writing. The Artful Thinking framework encompasses six thinking dispositions to explore works of art: Questioning & Investigating, Observing & Describing, Comparing & Connecting, Finding Complexity, Exploring Viewpoints, Reasoning. Each disposition uses a Visible Thinking routine, that extends and deepens students’ thinking. Students will develop skills in visual analysis, community building, and risk-taking while having fun!
We want students to connect our conversations around art to current events, histories, personal experiences, and imagined futures. We understand that not everyone has had welcoming experience/s in art museums, so our educators take care to use language that accounts for multiple experiences and encourages students to bring their full selves to the conversation. We expect visiting teachers and students to bring the same attention to care in return. We want to share what we know, but also admit what we don’t know, and most importantly foster a brave space where we listen to and learn from each other.
Three to Five Objects on a Tour
We believe in spending time with objects and doing deeper dives to uncover more! We typically devote ten to fifteen minutes to one artwork, which includes discussion and a short activity. We always aim to include artworks that represent multiple media, such as photography, painting, and sculpture. All objects are selected around a common theme (see available themes).
Building on and connecting with national and state learning standards
Our tour plans supplement and expand on classroom curricula and support:
- National Core Arts Learning Standards (emphasis on Responding, Connecting)
- Massachusetts Department of Education Frameworks for Art (2019)
- English Language Arts and Literacy (2017)