Reflections on Museum Education in 2017

Added on Medium, December 21, 2017

2018 is quickly approaching, and I have been thinking about what has been accomplished in the museum field in 2017. I looked back on blog posts I have written about what I anticipated for 2017, and there has been new developments that I did not anticipate but I am proud of what I have accomplished and I look forward to what the next year has in store.

There are some examples I list here but are not limited to of what I have accomplished this year in my professional career so far are what I am especially proud of.

I started working with the Maritime Explorium, a children’s science museum on Long Island. Since I started there, I not only worked on museum programming and museum education programming I began work on administration tasks to assist in running the museum. An example of a program I work in is a pre-school program, Little Sparks, which allows children to play while learning STEM lessons.

I began working with an Education Committee at the Three Village Historical Society to assist in revamping school programs and docent manual. In addition to researching for the programs and manual, I observed an education program delivered at a high school to see what can be improved on.

I have written this blog for over a year now, and it continues to be a learning experience I enjoyed. So many of you have expressed your views and opinions on the topics I introduced. Many also have shared the posts I made to help continue the discussion, and I am very grateful to all of you who read and share them.

There is more I still need to accomplish in my professional career but I am proud of how far I came. I hope to keep moving forward in my career and help the field continue to grow.

The museum field has been moving forward as well. While we still have a long way to go, our work as museum professionals showed the community we are working towards being more relevant. Also, we have been more vocal on things that we need to work on as a field especially equity, diversity, and how to have better working conditions to encourage individuals to stay in the field. There has been so many things that have happened this year for museum professionals.

Museum professionals, especially in the past few months, have been discussing what the future would be like for museums. Not only have museum professionals discussed the future of museums on American Alliance of Museums Alliance Labs and Museum magazine but many other museum blogs and websites continue the discussion as well. I recently came across the Museum Id magazine website, an international magazine which shares progressive thinking and developments in museums globally.

According to their website, Museum Id is an influential magazine and global conference for museum professionals since 2009. It is dedicated to serving the international museum community and is designed for museum professionals interested in a more innovative and open approach to professional inquiry and development.

The Museum Id magazine features a collection of various articles about the future of museums called the #FutureMuseum Project (I included the link in the Resources section below).

Some of the titles that were shared in the #FutureMuseum Project include Increasing Diversity And Helping To Establish A Sense of Ownership; Not Just A Building, But Building Community; Collaboration And Well-Being; Agile, Accessible, And Distinct; Engaging Audiences More Deeply; Retaining Their Sense of Public Service; and Museums As Young Learner’s Classrooms.

Each of the articles focus on museums working towards making their institutions more accessible to its audiences as well as more engaging within the community. The articles were written by museum professionals who contributed to the project by writing the short articles and sending them to the magazine via email.

As a field, we continue to work together to improve our museums and our communities. We also need to be reminded to be thankful for the museum colleagues we work with, for our visitors who come to use our resources and participate in our programs, and the community partners that we collaborate with to work towards making our communities better places to be in. I am proud to be working in this field, and I hope we continue to make progress in the New Year.

I decided that this would be the last blog post for the year 2017 because I will be spending time with family for Christmas and running children’s activities to celebrate the New Year. I will be updating my website with more resources I came across to help other museum, non-profit, and education professionals. I look forward to what is in store for 2018.

What are your personal and/or professional resolutions for the New Year? Do you have anything your institution is doing that you are looking forward to?

To those who are celebrating, Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! Happy New Year!


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