Off-site programs are "push-in" activities for schools and other community learning spaces that want to do some Assemble-like STEAM learning, but don't have the skills, materials, or agency to do it by themselves.
The goal is to augment the learning that's already happening in the space you're visiting. A typical off-site program starts with learning some foundational skills and then applying those new skills to complete a creative project related to the subject of the class or the focus of the program.
<aside> 🐎 Don't be a one-trick pony: Because Assemble educators are usually artists, schools sometimes think of us as only good for arts education. Assemble's approach can work just as well in a science classroom or history classroom. You just have to let them know!
If students can't come to Assemble, Assemble can come to them. Off-site programs allow you to spread the message of empowerment through creative learning to many more students than might ever find their way through your front door.
Similarly, many more schools and teachers are interested in offering creative and innovative STEAM learning than have the time and resources to do so. By offering to plug your programming into their space and curriculum, you're solving a huge problem for them.
If you're trying to establish or build your presence as an out-of-school learning provider, it's a great idea to develop strong connections to schools in your area. Once they can see what you're capable of, they're likely to become one of your biggest boosters and a source of referrals.
Daily or weekly. A few times or just once. You'll need 45 minutes at a minimum, but if you're lucky enough to get a double block and spend 75 minutes with the kids, you can really make magic happen!
15-30 students, like a typical school classroom
Elementary school students (and their teachers) ready to get hands-on with basic science concepts
Middle school students (and their teachers) ready to get creative and collaborative in group projects
High school students (and their teachers) ready to do a challenging and creative capstone project
Requires a formal relationship with the school or organization you're working with; students already enrolled in the class you're popping in to will be there ready to get down to learning
<aside> 🕑 Run of show for one Off-site session: Assemble's off-site programs take place on school days, either during class time or after school.
5 minutes Get to know each other with a quick icebreaker
10 minutes Basic instruction and demonstration of a new skill
25 minutes Hands-on practice applying a new skill to a learning challenge
10 minutes Discussion and sharing out
10 minutes Cleaning and packing up for the day
Off-site programs are about activating the learning that is already happening in the classroom by pointing out where that learning intersects with other ideas and then helping students actually put their hands-on the topic to create something new. Sound familiar? This is interdisciplinary learning and maker learning working together in a school classroom.
Many push-in programs visit a classroom, make something explode or do a performance, and leave. This might result in some oohs and ahhhs, but it doesn't leave much time for creative thinking and doing, or the kind of relationship building that can really support culturally responsive and social-emotional learning.
By basing our off-site curriculum on the Next Generation Science Standards and integrating creative technologies, we create a truly 21st century experience that many schools can't conjure on their own. Our template Lesson Plans help you figure this out.