I was able to observe part of a class that Denise taught for upper-level undergraduate philanthropy students one afternoon. While I wasn’t able to stay for the whole class period, as I had to drive back to Bloomington, I was able to stay and help with the first part of class. The class consisted of probably around 12-15 students and Denise had them split up into groups of 3 for the in-class activity. Since the class was discussing the history of philanthropy, Denise had selected pamphlets and items from the Archives that fit into a set of categories that only she and I knew and she put them in folders for each group to select and discuss. She also designed a brief worksheet for each group that asked them to examine all three items in their folder to see if they could determine specific information about the item, like the intended audience and action, author/publisher, and date, before asking the students to figure out what the pamphlets might have in common and what their overarching theme might be.
The class session was really interactive and it was fun to see the students puzzle over some of the old pamphlets – although a lot of the students were pretty quiet at first, they quickly became engaged in the activity and collaborated with each other to figure out the answers to the questions. Denise made sure to keep things moving and asked the groups to present their findings to the class before moving on to the next activity. At this point, I ended up having to leave, but Denise had planned additional activities and discussion time for the rest of the class period as per the professor’s wishes. It was neat to see Denise present in a classroom setting, since the previous instruction session I observed was less of a class and more of a tutorial. Unfortunately, due to my schedule, this was the last instruction session I could observe this semester, but it was a great one to end on!