Ideas For Changing Your Classroom Into A Community


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Ideas For Changing Your Classroom Into A Community

  1. 1. Ideas for changing your classroom into a community Presented by: Laine Staton and Elizabeth Hunter North Carolina Association for Middle Level Education 39th Annual Conference
  2. 2. Table of Contents/Resources Leadership Rubrics…………………….. p. 1-4 Morning Meeting………………………… p. 5 Peer to Peer (Buddies)...................... p. 6 Group Initiatives………………………… p. 7-9 Community Reflections………………. p. 10 Community Meal……………………….. p.11-15 Erdkinder…………………………………. p.16-25 Field Trip Study………………………… p.26-29 Leaders…………………………………….. p.30
  3. 3. Name _________________________ W____ Q____ p.1 Leadership Rubric and Reflection Community 4 When filling out your reflection, consider our school’s three pillars and details about each: Pillar Academics Community Self Action o o o o o Did you participate appropriately in class? Did you ask for help when you needed it? Did you produce high quality work? Did you use your agenda book correctly? Did you work independently? o o o o o Did you value and respect everyone in our community? Did you include everyone? Were you kind, open and helpful to everyone in our community? Did you restore your environment? Did you respect everyone’s belongings? o o o o o Did you take ownership, and think about, of all your actions and decisions? Did you move through the school in an appropriate manner? Did you use solo time appropriately? Did you take care of yourself physically by following the wellness policy? Did you openly accept feedback and constructive criticism? You need to write 3 meaningful comments for each day. These need to be clearly written and show thought and care. Monday 1. 2. 3. Tuesday 1. 2. 3.
  4. 4. Wednesday 1. 2. 3. Thursday 1. 2. 3. Friday 1. 2. 3. At the end of Friday: My two goals for next week are… 1. _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ 2. _________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________ Parent Signature ______________________________________________________________ Parent Comments:
  5. 5. Leadership Rubric and Reflection Community 4 Name _________________________ W__Q__ When filling out your reflection, consider our school’s three pillars and details about each: Pillar Action Academics o o o o o Did you participate appropriately in class? Did you ask for help when you needed it? Did you produce high quality work? Did you use your agenda book correctly? Did you work independently? Community o o o o o Did you value and respect everyone in our community? Did you include everyone? Were you kind, open and helpful to everyone in our community? Did you restore your environment? Did you respect everyone’s belongings? Self o o o o o Did you take ownership, and think about, of all your actions and decisions? Did you move through the school in an appropriate manner? Did you use solo time appropriately? Did you take care of yourself physically by following the wellness policy? Did you openly accept feedback and constructive criticism? Peer Partnership Reflections Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday I am in a peer partnership with _______________________ p.3
  6. 6. Monday 1. 2. 3. Tuesday 1. 2. 3. Wednesday 1. 2. 3. Thursday 1. 2. 3. Friday 1. 2. 3. Parent Signature ______________________________________________________________
  7. 7. Morning Meeting p.5 Morning meeting is a way for our class to come together, share stories, check on important information, and celebrate. Below is listed the different jobs for morning meetings. We switch our job people every month. We found that it was really difficult for a student to learn what their responsibilities were when they were switching weekly or daily. Facilitator - This person runs the meeting. They start the meeting, call on each person for each job, and and corrects chatty behavior (asks people to leave if they are too giggly, reminds people to focus on the purpose of the meeting, etc.) Greeting - A general icebreaker question is asked of the group. Students take turns sharing. Some greeters have gotten into the habit of writing the greeting in a designated place on the board so they are prepared for greeting. An example of some greetings may include: ● What do you think is the most important career? ● If you had a million dollars, what would you do with it? ● If you could be any character from a book, who would you be? ● If you had a superhero power, what would you have? ● What’s your favorite family tradition? Acknowledgements - This person calls for acknowledgements to be made within the classroom. They make sure there is enough wait time for people to remember what their acknowledgement may be. Next they ask for acknowledgements for outside the classroom. Announcements - This person reads on the general announcements for the good of the group. As teachers we are always getting emails telling us to remind kids to about the dance coming up or the next basketball game. We have the announcement people read that out loud to the class. We also share our sports scores during this time. Reflection - This person selects a poem or quote that could relate to what is happening in school or the community. They read the poem out loud and then asks for comments afterwards so students can share their ideas. Here are a couple of quotes/poems to get you started. Risk The Road Not Traveled Dreams “A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others.” - Ayn Rand “You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.” - Albert Einstein
  8. 8. Peer to Peer Buddies p. 6 We encourage students to work together as often as possible. Have a discussion with your community about how to be resourceful. The teacher doesn’t have to be the only person in the room that can help you if you’re stuck. By establishing a “buddy” system it trains students to think about other options for getting help. Strategically set up your pairs based on any of these qualities: ● higher academic abilities with lower abilities ● organized with disorganized ● kind and outgoing with shy and quiet
  9. 9. Through the Tunnel Group Initiatives p. 7 Materials: Extra Long Jump Rope (at least 15 feet) Procedure: 1. The object of this initiative is to get every member of the community to run under the rope as two people are turning it. The rope should only touch the ground one time between each person. 2. Start turning; count how many students in a row get under successfully. If the rope gets caught, or hits twice, or two or more people go through at the same time, start counting back at 1. 3. If they are not organizing well after several tries, stop the rope and ask questions like these: a. What is the object of the challenge? b. What is keeping us from being successful? (not who) c. Does anyone have any ideas for getting everyone under the rope successfully? d. Is there a way we can help each other? 4. Start turning the rope and try again. Keep counting loudly so that they know what they have accomplished and are challenged to beat it. 5. Stop as you see fit to discuss what is working and what can be done to improve. Processing: 1. What happened in the beginning after you were given directions and you tried the challenge? 2. What things were happening in the group that kept you from being successful? 3. What things were happening in the group that made it more successful? 4. How does this translate into our classroom? 5. What happens in our community that keeps us from being successful? 6. What happens in our community that makes us successful? 7. What can we do to make sure we’re all successful in our community? Variations: Challenge students to run through in pairs, threes, fours, etc. Then discuss the benefit of working together versus running through alone. Also, you can discuss the problems that arise when groups that are running through get too big and how all of these configurations translate into the classroom and being successful. Websites for more ideas:
  10. 10. I Like People Who p.8 Materials: Chairs in a tight circle Object: To learn about each other and find out what things you have in common with others. Procedure: 1. students sit in the chairs, one person stands in the middle and announces: “I like people who __________.” (Example: I like people who like soccer.) 2. All the people who also love that thing must now get up and find a new seat. No one is allowed to simply slide over to the next chair if it become vacant, everyone moving must CROSS the circle to find a new seat. The last person will not have a place to sit and become the new announcer of “I like people who” 3. After a few rounds of this, stop and ask questions like these: a. What is the object of this game? b. What have you learned about your community’s likes? c. What makes the game challenging? d. How have we treated people who didn’t find a seat? 4. Tell them the game will continue with one change. As people are scrambling for seats, the people who have stayed seated will be sliding into the empty seats to their left continuously. 5. Processing: 1. What happened in the beginning when you were scrambling for seats? 2. What things were happening in the group that kept you from being successful? 3. What things were happening in the group that made it more successful? 4. Is it important that we know about each other? 5. How does this translate into our classroom?
  11. 11. Captain’s Coming p.9 Objectives: Icebreaker, making connections with each other Group Size: LARGE Materials: No materials needed Directions Assign one person to be the "Captain." The role of the Captain is call out the actions and dismiss the players who don't do the actions quick enough or who break from character. Once the captain calls an action, each player has 3-4 seconds to start performing the action. If they don't find a group fast enough or perform the right action, they are out of the game. Here is an explanation of each of the actions... ■ ■ ■ Captain's Coming!: Everyone stands at "attention" (in a salute), and they can’t move from this position until the caller says, "At Ease!" If they laugh or break from the attention, they are dismissed. To the ship!: Players run to the right. To the shore!: Players run to the left. (for an added bonus be sure to point the right direction the first few times and then begin to point the opposite occasionally. You will be surprised how many go the way you point instead of the right direction) ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ Man Overboard!: One person drops to one knee the other stands behind them, puts a hand on their shoulder. Both scan the ocean for the overboard man Crows Nest!: Three players stand backs to each other and lock arms at the elbows to form the crows nest. Mess Table!: Four players squat in a circle like sitting at table and pretend to eat like they haven't eaten in days. Tell them to make really loud eating sounds like "YUM YUM YUM YUM YUM!" Walk the Plank!: Five people stand in a single file row hands on the shoulders of person in front of them Mermaid!: each player individually thrust out right hip, places right hand on that hip, takes left hand and makes a big exaggerated wave and yells out "howdy sailor!" (this one is basically for your own entertainment as it looks hilarious and it gets the participants laughing) Bunk Beds: 2 players. One person lays back down on the ground and holds up their arms. Second person puts their head by the other persons feet and uses their hands to support themselves. The first person grabs their legs and holds them up. 3 men rowing: 3 players. Get in a line and pretend to row a boat while singing "row row row your boat". ■ 4 men pointing north: 4 players. All get into a circle and point up. Sea Sick: 1 player. Pretend to throw up. ■ Hit the deck- fall to the floor on your stomach ■
  12. 12. Community Reflection p.10 Adolescents can sometimes bring drama into the classroom and it’s important to process this with them when it happens. It allows for them to understand the adult emotions they experience in safe and caring environment. We use a collaborative log to help them structure their thoughts about what is going on; the process is simple. First, have the students fill in each square of the table below, by themselves! Next, ask for students thoughts, starting with what is going well, then moving on to what is not going well, and what should be done about it. You will be amazed with how insightful your students can be! Make sure you use vocabulary from your behavior discussions so that everyone is on the same page about what they are seeing. What is going well? What is not going well? What can the teachers do to help? What will the students do to help.
  13. 13. Community Meal p.11 Version 1: Students “cook” In this version of community meal, students roll up their sleeves and actually make all the food and then enjoy it together. We encourage families to join us for this meal as well to broaden our “Community” to our students AND their families. Standard Operating Procedures: ● Students sign up to be in a group in advance. These groups have been, but are not limited to: bread crew, cooking crew, tablescapes & furniture crew, decorations. Of all of these, the cooking crew will be the largest as you will be making a variety of dishes and that group will need to be divided to accomplish all that work. ● A week before the meal we have the decorations committee work a little bit everyday on centerpieces, table menus, and room decorations. Sometimes we even have them making something that all guests will receive as a take home gift. ● A few days before Community Meal we do the Placemat Activity. In this activity, everyone gets a large piece of paper, 8 ½” X 11” or larger that already has their name on it, a marker, and a clipboard. The clipboard is only needed if you’re going to sit on the floor, if that is not an option make sure you explain the flow and direction things will be passed before you begin. ● Explain the rules: 1. students may write ONE kind word or a short kind phrase about the person who will own the placemat. 2. Pass that placemat, still attached to the clipboard, to the person on their left (this applies if they are in a circle). 3. We play music during this activity and there is NO TALKING ALLOWED. 4. Once everyone gets their placemat back, give them time to look at all the nice things people said about them. 5. Eyes on what you’re doing at all times. If you can’t talk AND watch what your hands are doing, then don’t talk. ● We collect the placemats and get them all laminated. On the day of the meal the tablescape crew will use them to set up the “tables” for the meal. ● Encourage musicians, singers, and poets to share at your Community Meal! ● Show a slideshow of pictures you have taken of your students. On the following pages you will find some recipes we have used that do NOT require an oven or stove:
  14. 14. Apple Chicken Salad Ingredients: 48 oz. cans cooked chicken 2 cups chopped apples 4 cups thinly sliced celery 16 tbsp raisins 2-2/3 cups Italian dressing 16 tsp brown sugar Directions: 1.In a medium bowl, gently stir together chicken, apples, celery, and raisins 2.In a small bowl, whisk together dressing and brown sugar. Pour over chicken mixture. 3.Toss gently to coat. 4.Serve on lettuce leaves. BLT Nibbles Ingredients: 132 Whole cherry tomatoes 3 pounds bacon, cooked and crumbled 2-1/4 cups mayo 9 green onions chopped 9 tbsp grated parmesan cheese 6 tbsp fresh parsley Directions: 1.Cut a thin slice off the top of each tomato 2.Scoop out and discard the pulp (use small spoon) 3.Invert tomatoes on paper towels to drain 4.In a small bowl, combine all remaining ingredients and mix well. 5.Spoon into tomatoes 6.Refrigerate until ready to serve. p.12
  15. 15. Hummus Ingredients: 6 cups canned garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained 1 cup tahini 2/4 cup lemon juice 3 tsp salt 6 garlic cloves, minced 3 tbsp olive oil 3 pinches of paprika 3 tsp minced fresh parsley p.13 Directions: 1.Place the garbanzo beans, tahini, lemon juice, salt and garlic in a blender or food processor 2.Blend until smooth 3.Pour olive oil in over the garbanzo bean mixture to make a smooth mixture. 4.Transfer mixture to serving bowl. 5.Add additional oil as needed 6.Sprinkle paprika and parsley on top Winter Fruit Salad with Lemon Poppy Seed Dressing Ingredients: · 2 cups white sugar · 2 cups lemon juice · 8 tsp diced onions · 4 tsp Dijon mustard · 4 tsp salt · 2-2/3 cup vegetable oil · 4 heads of romaine lettuce, rinsed, dried and torn into bite-sized pieces · 16 oz. shredded Swiss cheese · 4 cups dried cranberries · 4 apples, peeled, cored and cubed · 4 pears, cubed Directions: 1. In a blender, combine sugar, lemon juice, onion, mustard, and salt 2. Process until well blended 3. With machine still running add oil in a slow steady stream until mixture is thick and smooth. 4. Add poppy seeds and process just a few seconds more to mix. 5. In a large serving bowl combine the romaine lettuce, shredded Swiss cheese, cashews, dried cranberries, cubed apples and cubed pears. 6. Toss to mix them pour dressing over salad just before serving and toss to coat.
  16. 16. Cranberry Feta Pinwheels Ingredients: 3 packages of dried sweetened cranberries 3 cream cheese 3 cups crumbled Feta ¾ cup chopped green onion 12 tortillas Directions: 1.Combine all ingredients except tortillas, mix well. 2.Divide and spread mixture evenly among tortillas. 3.Roll up tightly, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour. 4.To serve cut into slices (about 1” thick) Turkey Cream Cheese Pinwheels Ingredients: 2 pounds of sliced turkey meat 3 cream cheese 2 heads lettuce, rinsed and torn in large leaves 12 tortillas Directions: 1.Spread cream cheese on tortilla 2.Put a layer of turkey on top of cream cheese 3.Roll up tightly 4.To serve cut into slices (about 1” thick) Black Bean and Corn Salad Ingredients: 8 cups canned black beans, drained and rinsed 8 cups crisp canned corn, drained 1-1/3 cup chopped red onion 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro 12 tbsp lime juice 4 tsp olive oil 2 tsp salt 2 tsp ground cumin ½ tsp ground red pepper Directions: 1.Mix all ingredients and chill p.14
  17. 17. Pico de Gallo Ingredients: 16 ripe plum tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped 4 small white onions, finely chopped 1 cup cilantro leaf, chopped 10 jalepeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped 4 tbsp lime juice Directions: 1.Combine all ingredients: cover and refrigerate. p.15 Greek Village Salad Ingredients: 16 large tomatoes, cut into wedges 4 cucumbers cut into cubes 4 medium red onions 4 large green peppers, sliced 2 pounds Feta cheese, crumbled 48 olives 16 oz. olive oil salt 1 cup parsley, chopped Directions: 1.Cut the tomatoes into small wedges, cube the cucumber, cut red onion into thin wedges, slice green pepper, and place into large bowl. 2.Add the cubed or crumbled feta cheese, olives, and olive oil and salt to taste. 3.At this point toss and sprinkle with Italian parsley and some of the crumbled cheese. Cherry Pudding Parfait Ingredients: 6 cans cherry pie filling 4 large tubs of cool whip 6 large boxes of vanilla instant pudding 70 clear cups Directions: 1.Make pudding according to directions on the box 2.Layer in each cup about ½ cup pudding, ¼ cup cherry pie filling, and top with Cool Whip Version 1: Family Potluck In this version of Community Meal, families bring in a wide variety of foods that they have cooked at home. We encourage families to try to bring something in that reflects their heritage but we also try not to be really restrictive. We want this experience to be positive, not stressful. All the Standard Operating Procedures from version 1 apply in version 2, minus the cooking. Therefore, we focus more heavily on creating gifts, decorating, and entertainment.
  18. 18. Erdkinder p.16 Erdkinder literally translates to “Land Children”. This trip is meant to build community and get children out of the regular classroom and into nature. This is a chance for students to learn about the importance of land and knowing where food comes from and how communities in the natural world find balance. Things you will have to do to prepare for an overnight(s) Erdkinder trip: ● Calculate cost and get that information out early. Offering families a “payment” plan option is very helpful for a costly trip. Also offer a chance to donate to a scholarship fund to support families in need. ● Be sure to gather medications properly for overnight Erdkinders. There is usually documentation from your school system that parents will have to fill out so get that organized early. You can get it all organized as early as two weeks in advance, and then have parents hand you the medications on the morning of your departure. ● It depends on the place you are going, but most destinations will require you to create a nutritional needs document that specifies allergies and/or foods that aren’t consumed for religious reasons. ● Parents are not invited on this trip. Children behave differently when their parents are around and we need them focusing on community. We have taken students on these trips that have NEVER been anywhere overnight without their parents. This includes students with a wide array of disabilities. Talk honestly to your student community about how we take care of each other, set the bar for kindness high. ● Particularly for a sleepover Erdkinder, have a parent night. Explain the details of the trip, what is needed, and your expectations. This will help a lot with parents who are stressed about an overnight stay. ● Do a packing lesson! Don’t be surprised that many of your students don’t know how to properly pack a suitcase. There are videos on youtube that also show packing tips. Be very specific about luggage size that is allowed. For example, a three-day, two-night trip should only require a carry-on sized piece of luggage. If they overpack you may run out of room on, or under, the bus. ● Be sure to get a packing list from the place you are going so that you will know things like, do they need sheets, sleeping bags, flashlights, bug spray, etc. ● For students, create a packet for them to complete as they are enjoying this experience. Make it observational and reflective. The place you are going may have educational materials that you can incorporate into the packet as well. An example of a packet we have used at the Summit Environmental Education Center follows this page. Locations we have used: Haw River State Park - Summit Environmental State Park URL: Fort Caswell: A Coastal Retreat and Convention Center URL:
  19. 19. Name ______________________ Community ___ p.17 "Precious things are conveyed to the younger generation through personal contact with those who teach, not - or at least not in the main - through textbooks. It is this that primarily constitutes and preserves culture." ~Maria Montessori Erdkinder Lakewood Montessori Middle School “My vision of the future is no longer of people taking exams and proceeding on that verification from that secondary school to the university, but of individuals passing from one stage of independence to a higher [one], by means of their own activity, through their own effort or will, which constitutes the inner evolution of the individual.” ~Maria Montessori Table of Contents Observational Drawings Daily Reflections Seminar
  20. 20. Observational Nature Drawings p.18 Directions: Sketch the items on the list. You may sketch more but you must at least complete the list. Be sure to label each item: o Two leaves o One tree o Your cabin o An insect o One other item of your choosing (it must be from the natural world-not humans) ~1~
  21. 21. Observational Nature Drawings ~2~ p.19
  22. 22. Observational Nature Drawings ~3~ p.20
  23. 23. Observational Nature Drawings ~4~ p.21
  24. 24. Observational Nature Drawings ~5~ p.22
  25. 25. Daily Reflection – Tuesday, September 18, 2012 p.23 Things to think about: How was the bus ride? Describe your new surroundings. What activities did you participate in today? Did you learn anything? How are you working together with your community members? What was the best part of the day? What was the worst part of the day? __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ ~6~
  26. 26. Daily Reflection – Wednesday, September 19, 2012 p.24 Things to think about: What activities did you participate in today? Did you learn anything? How are you working together with your community members? What was the best part of the day? What was the worst part of the day? __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ ~7~
  27. 27. Daily Reflection – Thursday, September 20, 2012 p.25 Things to think about: What activities did you participate in today? Did you learn anything? How are you working together with your community members? What was the best part of this trip? What was the worst part of this trip? As you reflect on your experience over the past few days, there are surely some challenges that we have all shared. What were the parts that were most challenging to you and what did you learn about yourself? __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________ ~8~
  28. 28. Field Trip Study p.26 Classes take Field Trips, Communities experience Field Studies. Step One: Prepare (academically and socially) We all work together to build understanding about our experience before we get on the bus. The example you’ll see here are materials we used for an afternoon visit to see the Alexander Calder exhibit at the Nasher Museum in Durham, NC. We read about the artist, see attached biography, we looked at some of his works, and we talked candidly about museum etiquette. We also had a parent come in who modeled the physics of creating a mobile. The lesson exhibited community beautifully as it showed how each piece affected all the others. The balance of the mobile reflected the balance we needed to be academically successful. Step Two: Experience Students should be participating in the activities provided and completing their packet as they are enjoying the experience Step Three: Process Students should discuss the experience, we often do this as a seminar so all voices can be heard. However, this is not the only way. After the Calder experience, we built mobiles.
  29. 29. Alexander Calder, American (1898 - 1976) p.27 Alexander Calder, internationally famous by his mid-30s, is renowned for developing a new idiom in modern art-the mobile. His works in this mode, from miniature to monumental, are called mobiles (suspended moving sculptures), standing mobiles (anchored moving sculptures) and stabiles (stationary constructions). Calder's abstract works are characteristically direct, spare, buoyant, colorful and finely crafted. He made ingenious, frequently witty, use of natural and manmade materials, including wire, sheet metal, wood and bronze. Calder was born in 1898 in Philadelphia, the son of Alexander Stirling Calder and grandson of Alexander Milne Calder, both well-known sculptors. After obtaining his mechanical engineering degree from the Stevens Institute of Technology, Calder worked at various jobs before enrolling at the Art Students League in New York City in 1923. During his student years, he did line drawings for the National Police Gazette. In 1925, Calder published his first book, Animal Sketches, illustrated in brush and ink. He produced oil paintings of city scenes, in a loose and easy style. Early in 1926, he began to carve primitivist figures in tropical woods, which remained an important medium in his work until 1930. In June 1936, Calder moved to Paris. He took some classes at the Academie de la Grande Chaumiere and made his first wire sculptures. Calder created a miniature circus in his studio; the animals, clowns and tumblers were made of wire and animated by hand. Many leading artists of the period attended, and helped with, the performances. Calder's first New York City exhibition was in 1928, and other exhibitions in Paris and Berlin gained him international recognition as a significant artist. A visit to Piet Mondrian's studio proved pivotal. Calder began to work in an abstract style, finishing his first nonobjective construction in 1931. In early 1932, he exhibited his first moving sculpture in an exhibition organized by Marcel Duchamp, who coined the word "mobile." In May 1932, Calder's fame was consolidated by the first United States show of his mobiles. Some were motor-driven, His later wind-driven mobiles enabled the sculptural parts to move independently, as Calder said, "by nature and chance." Calder returned to the United States to live and work in Roxbury, Massachusetts in June 1932. From the 1940s on, Calder's works, many of them large-scale outdoor sculptures, have been placed in virtually every major city of the Western world. In the 1950s, he created two new series of mobiles: "Towers," which included wall-mounted wire constructions, and "Gongs," mobiles with sound. Calder was prolific and worked throughout his career in many art forms. Calder was prolific and worked throughout his career in many art forms. He produced drawings, oil paintings, watercolors, etchings, gouache and serigraphy. He also designed jewelry, tapestry, theater settings and architectural interiors. Calder died in 1976.
  30. 30. MUSEUM ETIQUETTE p.28 1. Stay at least an arm's length away from the works of art. And remember to NEVER touch paintings, sculpture, or any other work of art! 2. Talk quietly in order not to disturb other visitors. You may always of course ask questions of the museum staff. 3. Most museums have rules about using photography. Be sure to inquire about their policy before using any camera/video equipment. 4. Avoid bringing any bulky backpacks or large purses. If you do, you will probably be asked to check it. These large objects slung over your shoulder might bump a work of art and damage it. 5. If you want to take any notes, use a pencil only. 6. No food or beverages are allowed in exhibit areas. Bus Rules · You must stay seated at all times. · Yelling, or other loud noises, are not allowed on the bus. Museum Rules · We are NOT visiting the museum store · You are to say with your group the entire time. · Listen to the docent; ask questions · Fill out your art form in pencil · Keep an open mind – don’t judge · DO NOT talk while the guide, docent, is talking!
  31. 31. Alexander Calder at the Nasher Sketch a piece of art p.29 Name/Title _____________________________ How does this piece show balance? ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ Sketch a piece of art Name/Title _____________________________ How does this piece show balance? ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________
  32. 32. Leaders p.30 Adolescents want to help, they want to be a part of a community...let them. Decide on jobs that need to be done regularly in your community and give the responsibility to the students. This is a great way to build leaders. In our community, jobs are posted: We do a “Wrap Up” to put the community back together; we are training them to restore their environment. Jobs will change periodically to give a variety of students an opportunity to help the community in different ways. Notice the sign includes the job and the expectations so there are no questions. Students completely run lunch. We go to the cafeteria with them but they do all the work. Two of our girls, call groups to line up in the hall, they make sure everyone is quiet before leading them downstairs, a team of students picks up everyone’s trash, cleans the tables, gets the entire cafeteria quiet and then dismisses tables to go to their next class.