Integrating Local Resources into the Classroom (899A)

A course for teachers offered through the Grant Wood AEA

Instructor: John Gruber-Miller

Course Description | Objectives | Outline | Evaluation

Course Description

Twenty-one new Roman portrait busts, recently donated to the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, offer teachers an opportunity to expand the walls of the traditional classroom and make the past relevant to our students. This course is especially designed for teachers (Grades 4-12) of history, social studies, English, humanities, and art. Taking a comparative approach, the course will examine the cultural and artistic context of these Roman portraits and compare Roman ideas about leadership, identity, women, and daily life with our own. This course will also make visits to other Cedar Rapids sites, exploring Cedar Rapids neo-classical architectural heritage and city government. Finally, participants will have the opportunity to discuss how to integrate other local resources into their classroom.

Course Objectives

Too often, our history texts present the picture of the past divorced from our present reality, a picture that rarely captures the diversity and richness of life in another era. The immediacy of visiting local sites helps students realize that the past need not be a foreign country. The course will give participants the background to make use of this new exhibit at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art and to explore the continuing Roman legacy to our own culture by introducing participants to Roman politics, society, religion, gender relations, and daily life. Each day, participants will explore historical, literary, and artistic texts that will challenge them to rethink not only the Romans, but also their influence on twentieth century Middle America. This course will assist teachers to integrate local resources into their curriculum to help their students reflect on their own society through the eyes of the past.

Text

Jo-Ann Shelton, As the Romans Did, 2nd ed. (Oxford University Press 1998) and photocopied readings

Outline

for 5 sessions/3 hours per session:

Session 1 Topics
  • get acquainted
  • the Roman empire: a stratified society
  • patrons and clients, family, slaves, hometown
  • Roman identity and American identity (Part 1)
 

Read for tomorrow

  • Shelton, chs. 1, 4
  • Wallace-Hadrill, Andrew. Houses and Society in Pompeii and Herculaneum. Princeton, 1994. Ch. 1.
  • Marvin, Miranda. "Copying in Roman Sculpture: The Replica Series" In Roman Art in Context. Ed. Eve D'Ambra. Prentice-Hall, 1993
Session 2 Topics
  • Roman identity and American identity (Part 2)
  • individualism, character and group associations in Roman portraiture
  • What does the setting (public or private) of a portrait say about one's identity?
  • groups will have time to work on lesson plans
  Read for tomorrow
  • Shelton, chs. 10.
  • Stambaugh, John. "Population." Ch 6 in The Ancient Roman City. Johns Hopkins, 1988.
  • various readings about your Roman emperor
Session 3 Topics
  • Roman politics
  • Emperors and ordinary people
  • what makes a successful leader: then and now?
  Read for tomorrow
  • Reading: Shelton, chs. 2, 3, 13.
  • Fantham, Elaine, et al. "Women of the High and Later Empire," Ch 13 in Women in the Classical World: Image and Text. New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.
Session 4 Topics
  • Roman women and American women: powerful or powerless?
  • groups will have time to work on lesson plans
  Read for tomorrow
  • Shelton, chs. 5, 7, 14.
  • Stambaugh, "Social Life in the City," 198-212; "The City and the Gods," 218-24; "Roman Holidays," 225-40.
Session 5 Topics
  • Daily Life: then and now
  • groups will share lesson plans
  • discussion: how do we integrate other local sites into the classroom?

Evaluation Process

Course Requirements:

Participants must attend all class sessions. If a session is missed, special arrangements should be made with the instructor to do something extra.

Participants must be willing to participate actively in all group and class activities. Activities will include class discussions, small group discussion, group work devising lesson plans, daily visits to the Riley Collection of Roman Portraits, and trips to Oak Hill Cemetery, Cedar Rapids City Hall and other neo-classical buildings in Cedar Rapids.

Methods of Evaluation

Participants will be responsible for a creating a lesson plan that integrates local resources into their curriculum. Groups will pick a topic and write a 1-2 week set of plans to accommodate that particular topic. Or they will develop materials to help students interact with the portraits of the Riley Collection on-line and in the classroom. Most of this will be written up outside of class.

Participants will write four 1-2 page papers responding to a question set by the instructor, covering the topics covered each day.

Final Grade:

10% Class Participation

50% Lesson plans or materials for Riley Collection website

40% four response papers (10% each)

GRADING AND PROCEDURES FOR EVALUATING PARTICIPANTS' WORK

A. Lesson Plans or Materials for Riley Collection website (50% of total grade)

1. Plans, assignments, assessments, materials development may be done by an individual, or within a group of individuals within the class. It is recommended that individuals participate in a group to cut down on the amount of work per individual.

2. Groups and individuals will be given time during the last hour of session 3 and 4 to work on lesson plans. On the last day, lesson plans will be shared with the rest of the participants.

3. Individuals will need to spend time outside of class to complete lesson plans. They will be due two weeks after the course is completed.

4. Lesson Plans will be evaluated as follows:

Lesson plans must cover a period of class time that will allow the teacher to cover a particular theme, e.g. Politics: Roman and American, Roman and American women, constructing image and identity then and now, etc. These plans should be something that the individuals can take back to their own classroom.

Plans must clearly integrate at least one local site into the lesson plans. The lesson plans must also include provisions for getting students to the site, the necessary permissions from parents, administrators, etc.

Plans must include at least two possibilities for assessing students' understanding of the objectives of the lesson plan unit, e.g. student journal, writing, artistic response, test, checklists, maps, charts, or anything else the group can devise.

Various Point Values of the Lesson Plans are:

Appropriate Theme/Unit (must be do-able in a classroom) 20 pts

Demonstrate how a visit to the local site enhances the presentation of the unit objectives 20 pts

Demonstrate practical provisions for getting to and from the site, including permissions 10 pts

Demonstrate how the unit connects with students' other classes, their own lives, the lives of others 20 pts

Two assessments integrated into the unit 20 pts

Sharing of plans with the class 10 pts

100 points possible: 90-100 = A; 80-89 = B; 70-79 = C; 60-69 = D

5. Materials development will be evaluated as follows:

Materials developed may include interactive quizzes that may be put on-line, recommendations for making the Riley website more kid-friendly, activities for students to pursue before or after viewing the Riley Collection, etc. These materials should be something that the individuals can use in their own classroom. Although these materials should be designed to be available on-line, you are not responsible for putting them on-line or need to know how to create webpages.

Plans must clearly integrate at least two aspects of the Riley site into their materials, e.g., a portrait and a broader concept, such as making portraits or Roman and American politics or women, then and now.

Plans must include at least two possibilities for assessing students' understanding of the objectives of the lesson plan unit, e.g. student journal, writing, artistic response, test, checklists, maps, charts, or anything else the group can devise. Preferably these assessments are appropriate for students to use on-line.

Various Point Values of the Materials Development project are:

Appropriate Theme/Unit (must be do-able in a classroom) 20 pts

Design materials to encourage a visit to the Riley Collection 20 pts

Demonstrate how the unit connects with students' other classes, their own lives, the lives of others 25 pts

Two or more assessments integrated into the unit 25 pts

Sharing of plans with the class 10 pts

100 points possible: 90-100 = A; 80-89 = B; 70-79 = C; 60-69 = D

B. Response papers (40% of total grade; 10% each)

Each day I will set a question that asks each participant to reflect on the day's readings before we discuss them in class. They are due at the beginning of the class session. Each 1-2 page essay is intended for you to summarize the content of each day's readings, to explore how they might apply to your students' lives, and how they affect you.

Response papers will be evaluated as follows:

Summarize the key issues in the readings for the day, making sure to note ambiguities and contradictions within the evidence. 34 pts

How do these issues compare with similar issues in the U.S. today? In other words, how do these issues connect with the students' other classes, their own lives, and the lives of others? 33 pts

How do these readings challenge your ideas of ancient Rome, the U.S., and your own values. How will they affect the way you teach or live your life? 33 pts

100 points possible

90-100 = A; 80-89 = B; 70-79 = C; 60-69 = D

C. Class Participation (10% of the total grade)