Tips for Docents

Before your session:

  • Coordinate with your Class Lead about the date/time of your session. This is even easier if you are the class lead! :-) Don't forget to review the GRACE Art Calendar to ensure the GRACE Art cart is not previously reserved for your date/time.
  • Contact the coordinator about adding your scheduled session to the GRACE Art calendar.
  • Confirm that a Ravensworth E.S. Event Planner Form has been submitted to the Office. A copy of this document is attached below.
  • Attend session planning meetings to discuss the upcoming topic (usually the third week of the month at 9 a.m. in the Ravensworth Cafeteria). Check the  Calendar for exact dates/times.
  • Ensure any craft prep required for your session is completed
  • Read the write-up of the artist/topic (available via GRACE Art DropBox and in the blue folder on the GRACE Art cart). 
  • Review the poster portfolio online or stored with the GRACE Art cart. 
  • Feel free to personalize your presentation.  If you don't like the GRACE Art material or teaching points, use your own.
  • If you are using Powerpoint, notify the teacher in advance you so they can have it set up (bring your presentation on a thumb-drive or disc) and familiarize yourself with the  SmartBoard 
  • Practice the craft in advance so you can give them pointers on how to make it come out right or ask docents who have already taught the session for tips. Names of docents are listed on Calendar entries if you're unsure who has already taught a session.
  • If time permits, contact another GRACE Art volunteer or the coordinator to arrange shadowing one of their sessions to observe how they lead a session.
During your session:
  • Arrange to meet your Docent Aids outside your classroom door 5 to 10 minutes before your session time.
  • Retrieve the GRACE Art cart, make sure it is stocked for your session, and roll it to your classroom. 
  • If you are using the portfolio posters, arrange them in the order you intend to use them.
  • Open your session by asking the students what they know already about the topic.  They might just surprise you.
  • Keep the students engaged by asking them questions.
  • Keep control of the class by asking the teacher what the signal is for 'attention' (e.g. 1-2-3 eyes on me or raising your hand).
  • Watch the time.  Limit the lecture to leave enough time for the craft and cleanup.  We usually have 50-60 minutes.  Verify this with your teacher.
  • If you are running late or cannot come, contact the others doing your presentation with you as soon as possible.
  • Pass out materials after the lecture and after the craft has been explained  (students tend not to listen if they have the materials to fiddle with)
  • Encourage students when they are stalled or self-conscious.  We do not have enough materials for "do-overs".  If a student feels they have made a mistake or don't like what they have done, help them be "art-smart" and make the most of it.
  • Help clean-up and getting out of the classroom on time.  The teachers need us to be on schedule.
  • Have fun!!
After your session:
  • Return the GRACE Art cart to its storage location
  • Ensure the cart is stocked for the next docent's session
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GRACE Art,
Sep 10, 2015, 8:13 AM