Tour Basics 101


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Training Session #1

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Tour Basics 101

  1. 1. Docent Training: Session 1: Tour Basics 101<br />Arizona Museum for Youth<br />
  2. 2. What is a Docent?<br />A docent is a tour guide. The word docent comes from the Latin word docere, “to teach.”<br />No background in art is necessary.<br />Enthusiasm and a desire to learn new skills and lead groups is necessary.<br />
  3. 3. Why Orientation is Important<br />Orientation is important because it sets the tone for the tour. Think about going to a new place: you want to know what you are going to do, how long you are going to do it, and where everything is (Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs).<br />Your orientation need not be long to be effective, but it should include several components. Visitors will:<br />Meet you and be welcomed to the Museum<br />Know how long the tour lasts, that they’ll look at select works of art and, if a full guided tour, will make art during their tour.<br />Learn where the restrooms are<br />Understand that you’ll be asking questions that will have them looking closely at works of art. Explain the focus of the tour.<br />Be ready by raising their hand to respond to your questions.<br />Hands on and hands off<br />Let’s go explore! Smile! Have fun! Enthusiasm is catching! <br />
  4. 4. Tour Types, Zones, Props<br />There are two types of tours at the Museum: Guided and Self-Guided.<br />Guided Tours are led by a trained tour guide/docent<br />Self-Guided Tours are guided by the tour group themselves.<br />For Guided Tours, there are typically 5 zones to a 90-minute tour:<br />4 Zones of artwork/activity <br />1 Zone of art-making time<br />For each zone in the exhibition, we typically provide a variety of props that can be used on the tour. Demo heart, star, house prop.<br />
  5. 5. VTS: Visual Thinking Strategies<br />VTS is simple. VTS is 3 questions that can open up any work of art to visual exploration.<br />1. What is going on in this artwork?<br />2. What do you see that makes you say that?<br />3. What other things do you see?<br />
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  7. 7. Inquiry Questioning Strategies<br />What is “Inquiry Questioning?”<br />Use guiding questions to help children develop more sophisticated understandings. <br />Use sharing and discussion to help children consider their individual ideas in relation to the ideas of others. <br />Create opportunities for children to gain experiences that will help them think more deeply about their ideas. <br />Ask questions that are open-ended, to encourage a variety of responses.<br />
  8. 8. Unruly Tour Groups: How to Keep Audiences Engaged<br />Unruly groups are discouraged when they have a strong “pack leader.” So, how to be a strong “pack leader?”<br />Set the tone. Let the group know that you are leading them, how they ask questions and what to expect.<br />Pay attention to any unruly children or stragglers…be sure they stay with the group and stay attentive. Simply moving yourself closer to them will draw their attention.<br />Tone of voice. Be sure to use a voice that commands their attention but does not distract other tour groups.<br />Eye contact. Direct eye contact is a powerful tool for connecting to your group.<br />Demonstrate the behavior you want to see. Encourage more of that behavior through words and actions<br />
  9. 9. Peer Evaluation<br />Shadow a tour to pick up tour techniques.<br />Tag-team presentations (2 people) allow you to co-lead a tour to “get your feet wet.”<br />Evaluate a fellow docent’s tour and discuss your findings with them to learn more about effective ways to lead a tour.<br />Tour Evaluation Form<br />
  10. 10. Portfolio Project<br />Elements of Art and Principles of Design—1st Portfolio Project. Bring with you to the next docent training!<br />What are they, what are their definitions?<br />Ex. Line: Line is…<br />Find foremost examples of them in works of art online and add them to your definitions.<br />Demonstrate 5 ways you can weave into the Pattern Wizardry tour an element of art and/or principle of design.<br />
  11. 11. Close<br />Summarize what was seen and discussed.<br />Thank them for their great questions and participation.<br />Encourage individuals to return with their families, to see other parts of the Museum and parts of the exhibition they didn’t see on the tour.<br />