As someone who has participated in the Great American Teach-In, I can verify that the experience can benefit both students and volunteers. Some, of course, more than others.
What’s important to remember is this. Some speakers share insights on an occupation, avocation or profession. Others are more oriented to delivering messages concerning values, responsibilities and ethics. And then there is the de facto, show-and-tell holiday.
One middle school class gets an oncologist; others get a stuntman, a card trickster, a belly dancer. Still others are privy to a helicopter and any number of things it might be related to. Some elementary school students hear from a former pro athlete and Rhodes Scholar nominee who has a compelling message about staying out of trouble and away from drugs. Others learn about thermal imaging equipment. Others get a spooked gelding.