Over the past generation, museums have undergone a seismic transition. No longer simply repositories of artifacts and authority, they are now, as the Smithsonian’s Stephen E. Weil once described, “a place for somebody.”
As museums have moved toward a visitor-centered approach, their education departments have professionalized and developed new pedagogical approaches including physicality, narrativity and materiality to make the same exhibitions meaningful to tour groups of third graders, college classes, and senior citizens alike.
The scholarship of teaching and learning has lauded the great benefits of learning in and from museums. Yet there have been few concrete recommendations for how the specific methods museum educators employ might be adapted to the classroom space. This project seeks to fill that gap.
Designed collaboratively by an interdisciplinary group of CUNY Graduate Center PhD and MA candidates (see sidebar) as part of a 2017-2018 Focused Inquiry Group at the Teaching and Learning Center, this website offers individual activities and model lesson plans that professors can use to integrate key museum pedagogies in the higher ed classroom.
We hope that you find these lessons to be of interest and of use, and we welcome your feedback. Please leave us a comment to let us know what you think!