Day Trip Visual Research Photo Exercise
Students take a day trip to the New Haven Green. Visit the Center Church, Grove Street Cemetery, and Nine Square locales. With disposable cameras in hand, seek out and take photos of fences and gates in the vicinity. No preliminary info will be given. Children will brainstorm on purposes for which fences (and gates where applicable) would have been created, recording their findings on informational worksheet (Exhibit 1, Attachment A). They will zero in on the intricacy or simplicity of design, what the object is made of, condition of the functional object and whether the objects seems to modern, old, or refurbished.
Visit to the New Haven Museum & Historical Society. View New Haven Minutes of Meeting from 18
centuries, and look at sketches and documents that provide descriptive images of New Haven during said periods. Determine types of materials used to make fences information discoveries, deduce why fences were used during the period, who crafted some of the gates and fences, industries that existed during the time. Introduce the ironworks of Samuel Yellin and correlating data re: ironworks industry in East Haven. Also, find info on the Wooster Square community in New Haven. Students will record their findings, incorporating acquired information with previously obtained data.
Take an hour-long walking tour of Wooster Square where we will seek out vintage gates and fences and collect additional photographic images regarding these specific functional items in the Wooster Square community. Students will subsequently visit to the Sterling Library to observe architectural layout and designs of New Haven landmarks, buildings, and architectural design of the New Haven community in the 18
century. Students will additionally take a tour of Sterling and will be encouraged to find the works of Samuel Yellin within their surrounding. Urge students to closely examine the craftsmanship of the structures, comparing and contrasting them with ironwork fences experienced during previous excursions. (Permission to take photos within the library will be requested by the students to acclimate them to the protocol of working within a library environ.)
Weeks 4 and 5
Using a follow-up journal writing activity framework and scoring rubric (Attachments B and C), students will create draft, rewrite, edit and complete an informational essay that highlights what they have learned about the New Haven community, and reveals their understanding of gates and fences as material culture.
Weeks 6 and 7
Working in conjunction with our in-house Art staff, students will create a three dimensional design for a fence or gate. They will determine the purpose for the functional object’s creation, highlighting the community and people for whom it will be created. Pretending that they live in 19
century New Haven and incorporating much of what they have learned about the period through our hands-on research initiative, students will create a journal insert to conceptualize aspects of the fence-making experience.
As a culminating activity, students will present their work during a special parent interactive Author’s Tea. Their journal writing piece accompanied by their fence creation will be showcased during this time. Students will meet with parents and guest visitors to explain all that went into completing their individual projects. Subsequent display in community-based venue will also take place.