Tips & Tools: Sensory Experiences on Guided Tours

On a guided tour, using an approach that appeals to all or some of the senses will help you to make your tour experiences more memorable and engaging. It will also help you to communicate your ideas more effectively. In this week's Tips and Tools we're looking at ways to make your tour a more sensory experience. When we travel to a new city or enter a museum for the first time, our senses go into overdrive. We're excited by so many new things to see, hear, smell and do. A guided tour helps participants to focus this sensory overload by

Tips & Tools: Using Notebooks for Activities on Guided Tours

In praise of the humble notebook... I have hundreds of tips and tools in my head that I could share with you, but today I've decided to share my go-to and most simple tool - using notebooks for activities on guided tours. A notebook, you say? But that's not very exciting... Well, when my three children were small, we used to go off to museums, galleries and places like the zoo armed with a small notebook and a pencil. I just told them that whenever they saw something they liked, they should make a note of it however they wanted

Tips & Tools: How to use a Viewfinder to Look Closely

A viewfinder is a tool that enables artists to frame or crop a particular scene to arrange their composition. It is usually a square or a rectangle made out of card or plastic through which you look at an area in more detail. MAKE or BUY You can easily make your own out of card and even experiment with creating an interesting shape for your viewfinder. I used to ask my daughters to make them for me when it was a rainy day and we were stuck for something to make/do. You can also use old slides for projectors (with

Visible Thinking Routine of the Week: Beginning-Middle-End

⭐️VISIBLE THINKING ROUTINE OF THE WEEK ⭐️ BEGINNING-MIDDLE-END I absolutely love this routine. It has always been a STAR ⭐️ for me with groups of all ages. It never fails. Even with a group of IT Managers who admitted right at the start of our workshop that they 'don't do art museums' loved this routine and came up with some very imaginative storylines for some Jeff Wall photographs! BEGINNING-MIDDLE-END is our 5th VTR of the week and this one is the last thinking routine that we cover on our DAY 1 Introduction to VT in the Museum training (others are,

Stuck in a Tour Rut? 6 Tips to Refresh your Guided Tour

Are you looking forward to leading your tours again in 2020? Are you getting excited by the thought of the new season starting?   If you're not sure about your answers to those questions, maybe you need to shake things up a little. We have a responsibility to do so much more than just ‘inform’ on our tours - people want to be surprised, moved, connected, and even transformed when they book a guided tour in 2020. So, if you're feeling jaded and uninspired, it's time to make some changes. First, get out of your comfort

Verbal Facilitation Tools to Make Your Guided Tours More Interactive

In my previous post on facilitation skills, 'A Quick Guide to Facilitation Skills on Guided Tours', I talked about the many skills required to being an effective facilitator and the 4 areas that I focus on and offer coaching around for my ‘Visible Thinking in the Museum‘ trainings. Today I'm going to focus on the verbal facilitation tools that you can use to help to engage participants and make sure everyone is involved on a guided tour. Encourage & Guide Looking Pointing & Paraphrasing Clarifying  Linking or bridging Summarising Encourage quiet group members Giving balanced feedback Encourage & Guide Looking

How to Use Visible Thinking Routines on Guided Tours

As routines are part of the classroom, so they are also an important part of the guided tour experience. As you welcome guests or visitors at the start of a tour, you will take a few minutes to remind visitors of any guidelines to keep visitors and any historic sites or collections safe. You will also introduce them to the theme and structure of the tour. If done well, these guidelines help participants to understand what to expect and what to do. Imagine the benefits then of a routine that would help visitors to make sense of objects/artworks/buildings in a