SchoolArts Magazine

MAY 2018

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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of their museum experience? Will it be educational, or just a fun day outside of the classroom? Everyday Life Finding connections between learn- ing and students' lives can enhance the learning experience. I began thinking of ways that my high-school students relate to one another. Although social media is very popu- lar, a simple deck of playing cards can bring a group of students together like nothing else. Playing cards come in a variety of formats and can be found just about anywhere. Sou- venir shops, major cities, compa- nies, and museums will often have their own special editions. Then it hit me: "What if students created a deck of cards that reflected the museum we visited?" Planning Ahead After thinking through all the logistics of creating a deck of cards, I realized that I needed a plan. Organization of students into teams, assessment tools, and clear instructions would all be necessary. As I planned the field trip, I developed several steps to make it happen. Before the Field Trip • Divide students into equal groups. (I had about one hun - dred students, so it worked out to be groups of about twenty- five.) Assign each group a color. (Our decks would be red, blue, black, and green.) • Create a checklist to ensure that each card is being made by the student assigned to it. (Each student was responsible for about two cards.) • Create a template for each of the fifty-two cards in a deck, with two Jokers, just for fun. • Print the cards on white card- stock and then cut and rubber- band the groups by deck. Print an extra deck or two for lost or damaged cards. During the class period prior to the field trip, explain the project to students. • Distribute the cards to students and have them put them in a labeled baggie. Also in the baggie: pencil, eraser, group-color marker. • Collect and store the baggies to easily distribute at the museum. A simple deck of pla ing cards can bring a group of students together like nothing else. 28 MAY 2018 SchoolArts Some of the many playing cards inspired by a high-school visit to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

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