During our kids walling event held during the Dry Stone Canada Barriefield Festival last October, I was asked by one of the local teachers if I might like to participate later in a local Beyond Classrooms program and give a talk to children about dry stone walls.
Last Thursday I was delighted to be able to spend time with two dozen grade 3 and 4 students at the Frontenac County Schools Museum in Barriefield exploring various creative activities involving designing and building arched bridges.
The link below is to a short video clip of one of the highlights of that class.
Beyond Classrooms Kingston moves teachers and their classrooms into community museums, art galleries and community sites for an entire week. The host site becomes an extension of the teacher’s classroom, where he or she can help students enhance their literacy, critical thinking and problem solving skills, in an authentic environment.
Working alongside host site staff and the BCK Coordinator, each teacher designs a unique program that uses the students’ week at the site, as a catalyst for inquiry-based learning.
Learning at a museum or gallery for an entire week takes away the field trip feeling and creates an environment where students can slow down their learning, look closely and reflect, through sketching and journal writing.
Presentations by specialists, hands-on activities, time spent exploring the collections – all stimulate curiosity, and encourage further investigation. Frequent opportunities for reflection and discussion heighten student discovery and play a significant role in helping to foster cultural awareness, civic pride, community responsibility, and stewardship.