Signs, Plaques, Markers

a. Ask your class to discuss where you have signage in your school. Is this signage helpful? Is it valued? Is any signage missing that would highlight things that are important to students? Where? What signs would students make to address things that go unnoticed?

b. Ask students to think of something in their neighborhood that is important to them, but maybe not valued by everyone in their community. Ask them to create signs for this site.  What did they come up with? Why did they choose that place?

c. The road signs that McArthur produced are the ones that communicate historical and cultural information. Ask your students to imagine that sometime in the future, an historical or cultural plaque will be installed  on their classroom seat in their honor, recognizing their accomplishments and contributions to society.

d. Have each student imagine themselves in the future. What is their greatest accomplishment? What would their plaque commemorate? For example, are they a famous musician, artist, or athelete? The first woman to land on Mars? Have they cured a disease? Discovered a new element on the periodic table? Ask students to invent their own future history and create an historical or cultural plaque for themselves. Have them clearly indicate the historical or cultural significance it is meant to highlight. Have students look in their neighborhood for cultural medallions. New York City teachers can use the resource below.

Listing of cultural medallions on buildings in New York City boroughs.