Daniel SanGiacomo

aka Daniel Aktas

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Personal to Political

Ideas for Engaging the Community

  • Public display. Post-its. Subway therapy.
  • Bowls project
  • Murals/ signs
  • Plays and backdrops
  • Bring in local artists
  • Museum Visit
  • Photography. Walking Tours
  • Public service
  • Community Garden. (EARTH SCHOOL)
  • Team teaching (parent and local artists)
  • Invite people into your classroom!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Working with students outside classroom!
    • Teachers arrange a chance to switch classes for a day
    • Having older students teach younger students
    • Students teach adults or seniors in the community
  • Mix up spaces that don’t show art
    • Puts up information about your school and your program!!!!
  • Offering workshops. (Sometimes you can get paid for this)
    • Teach parents what students are already doing
    • Teach faculty
    • Teach students not in your class
    • One day workshops

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When watching a video in class

Tools for using video in the classroom

Be specific about instructions when watching videos to encourage active viewing.

Ask students to:

    • Jot down a reflection when an even occurs
    • Raise their hand during a specific event or quote
    • Be prepared to respond to a specific prompt at the end of the video
    • Talk about what active viewing looks like

Augment the video by:

    • Pause the video and asking specific questions
      • Check for understanding
      • Do you guys check that out? What does that mean?
    • Pausing the video and ask students to talk about what just happened with a partner
      • Not 10-minute just a quick 2-minute conversation
    • Playing the video twice and explain that you will be watching it twice
      • For short videos
    • Hiding the video and only showing the audio of the footage
      • Listen to this artist and tell me what you think the work looks like
    • Turning off the audio……
      • What do you think they are saying?


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Sentence Stems for the Art Class

Over time I have accumulated sentence stems for talking to students about their art.

  • Tell me about… (the drawing)
    • vs. What do you need help with…
    • have students explain the story of the work
  • Tell me more…
    • A follow up for “tell me about”
    • or Give me some more details….
    • have students tell you about their vision for an artwork
  • Tell me about the idea….
    • vs. tell me about the project
  • What would happen if…..
  • I noticed that…
  • One thing I’m thinking about…
    • Honors students work and ideas
  • Tell me about the steps you took to get here…
    • have students walk you through
    • Follow up with… tell me about what you were thinking when you started the project
  • WHO… are these people
  • WHEN… did this take place
  • WHERE… is this taking place?
  • How does that make you feel…



  • Why….
    • Requiring students to defend their work
  • This looks like… some artist
    • Does not get anywhere
    • Does not honor the things they are thinking about
  • Yes or no questions