Prior to visiting the RSM with my class I would definitely have a few supplemental lessons leading up to the visit. These lessons would focus on TreatyEd, but specifically they would cover what is not covered in the museum. This would be the negative relationship with the European settlers. I do not mean this to be harsh, but the museum portrays the Europeans settlers as almost ‘saviors’ to the First Nations – giving them vaccinations, giving them formal education, etc. I think it would be important to give the students this knowledge prior to the visit and then let them look for these connections at the actual museum. I would also be sure to point out this lack of ‘truth’ portrayed at the museum, and the the students to discuss the issue.
I do not think I would use the hand out that we completed in class. I feel this takes away from the ‘exploring’ that I believe visiting museum should be about. Also, from a practical stand point, it is not very effective as certain displays become ‘backlogged’ with many students making it hard for other patrons to views the displays.
I would allow my students to enjoy the museum at their own pace focusing on what really interests them. I would likely have some type of assignment tied to the visit, but it would not be detailed questions regarding specific displays. Instead it would involve a bit of inquiry learning where students would critique a particular exhibit of their choice. Explaining the flaws and strengths of the exhibit and how they may have changed either the display or the supplemental reading that goes along with the display.