Wesley Heights, Year One
Neuhart – Jen Weisphal
Learning Objective/Exit Outcomes:
- Students will be able to give direction based off of the body position of another student using North to go forward, South to go backward, West to go right and East to go left
- Students will use degrees (spaces of longitude and latitude) as a unit of measurement to reach a goal
- Students will contribute to peer learning and collaboration
- Students will work on the development of empathy by communicating effectively
Map and Globe Skills : Use latitude and longitude to determine location.
TA3.RE.1 Engage actively and appropriately as an audience member.
- Participate as audience.
Theatre Arts and Math
The PAIR Specialist explained the goals of Minefield to the classroom, which centered around getting one blindfolded student from point A (the door to the classroom) to point B (a desk in the back corner of the room) by providing a single direction (take two small steps forward, turn your body from 12:00 on the clock to 10:00, lift your arm above your head, etc) each time a group of students answers a fraction problem correctly.
The teacher chose a student to be the blindfolded and walk through the “Minefield” in the classroom. This student was asked to step outside and either put on a blindfold or close their eyes depending on the students’ comfort level. The teacher instructed the rest of the students to create “landmines: in the classroom by moving desks, chairs, etc around to make a completely new space to get the blindfolded student through.
The blindfolded student was given direction by each peer using “degrees” as the unit of measurement for each step and North, South, East, and West to change direction.
It’s important to discuss how the game went because, while the topical goal of this art strategy is practicing operations of fractions, the underlying goal is creating unity in the class, collaborating to reach a goal, supporting each other through difficult situations, communicating clearly and precisely, and developing empathy.
Ask the student who was blindfolded what the experience was like for them. You may ask follow up questions about how they felt during the exercise, what is was like to trust the communication given by their peers, etc.
Ask the students giving direction what it was like to watch one of their peers go through the Minefield. Did it stir up feelings of excitement, concern, etc? Do they understand the feelings of the student who was blindfolded?
Plan ahead for how to use direction for the blindfolded person. Since being blindfolded disorients your understanding of the space, it would be almost impossible for the blindfolded student to retain where they are in relation to the front of the room (North), so for this exercise, ‘North’ was wherever the blindfolded student was facing forward, so you can use “Turn to the West” for the student to turn to their left.
With the goal of students understanding the content, it would be great to do a double combination of direction, such as “2 degrees North” and “5 degrees Northeast” rather than doing the traditional Minefield, where we separate each instruction as “turn Northeast” then “walk 5 degrees.”