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In this unit, students and teacher will use artifacts from the permanent collection at the Aga Khan Museum as a jumping off point to explore the themes of personal narratives, journies, community, transmission of culture and creating community. Choral Speaking, Tableau, Role Playing and Dance exercises will be used to explore the Muslim diaspora. The culminating task in this unit will have students work in role to create a gathering space for their community.
This unit can be used as a means of introducing the elements of dance, choral speaking, tableau or role play. This unit can be adapted for use in any elementary classroom, but is intended to complement the grade 2 and 4 social studies curriculum.
A1. Creating and Presenting: apply the creative process (see pages 19–22) to the composition of a variety of dance pieces, using the elements of dance to communicate feelings and ideas;
A2. Reflecting, Responding, and Analysing: apply the critical analysis process (see pages 23–28) to communicate their feelings, ideas, and understandings in response to a variety of dance pieces and experiences
B1. Creating and Presenting: apply the creative process (see pages 19–22) to process drama and the development of drama works, using the elements and conventions of drama to communicate feelings, ideas, and multiple perspectives;
B2. Reflecting, Responding, and Analysing: apply the critical analysis process (see pages 23–28) to communicate feelings, ideas, and understandings in response to a variety of drama works and experiences
Unit Guiding Questions
How does passing on and preserving artifacts allows us to have a glimpse into the lives of people’s pasts?
How do objects convey identity, culture, history?
How can understanding the creation of artifacts allows us to understand the values of a society?
How have the arts been used to communicate culture?
How can drama and dance help us to reflect on and respond to cultural artifacts and the Muslim diaspora?
How can drama and dance help us explore and convey messages about community and gathering space?
Assessment and Evaluation
Assessment for Learning
Side-coaching, anecdotal notes, direct observation, descriptive feedback
Assessment as Learning
Co-constructing of criteria, reflection, self and peer feedback based on success criteria
Assessment of Learning
Evaluation of culminating task, using a rubric
Lesson 1 - Our Personal Stories
In this lesson, students will use objects that are important to them as a starting point to discussing personal histories and the importance of museums as cultural institutions. Students will then have the opportunity to explore poetry through choral speaking and visual art.
Lesson 2 - Journeys
Using dance, students will explore the concept of a “journey”. They will use different movement activities and tableaux to experiment with ways to represent their own personal journeys and the journey of an object of cultural significance from the Aga Khan permanent collection.
Lesson 3 - Gathering Places
Through the exploration of “gathering places” found in the Aga Khan museum students will discover the relevance of gathering places and the different roles that they play in our communities. Students will also make connections into the different ways the meeting places are used to communicate ideas and thoughts and transmit culture. Through the inquiry process students will analyze the spaces provided and share their creations using drama and dance conventions.