Have you ever read regulations of a museum? And maybe you tried to explain to your child what the rules were when visiting cultural institutions? Can this be interesting to anyone at all?
There is no doubt that regulations are needed, but no one considers them to be an interesting read. A year ago, we set ourselves a goal of having the set of rules applicable at our Museum translated into the children’s language. However, we did not want to do it ourselves. We invited a group of enthusiastic children to help.
How did it all start?
After the success of the “Museum. Share!” (“Muzeum. Udostępnij!”) project, participated by socio-therapeutic care centres, we heard: We’re not leaving, we want to come back and do something else!” We noticed that our youngest visitors do not feel comfortable when walking around the permanent exhibition. Markings in the area are sometimes unclear for them and they wait for adults to help them out. At the same time, they are full of enthusiasm and curiosity, all they need are clearly defined rules of the game.
What did we do?
The first meeting with young experts was held in June 2018. The Group declared interest in the project and enthusiasm for work. We started implementation in September. And here, we were met with a surprise – the children we used to know were now teenagers. We needed to change our approach. We asked them not about what they thought as children, but rather to look at the experiences in their immediate pasts from a distance. Together, we analysed their memories from the first visit to the museum, we stimulated their critical thinking through a number of activities. The group also had an opportunity to meet and conduct discussions with employees, which allowed them to broaden their perspectives.
What were the results?
Notes containing comments and reflections were meticulously collected and then segregated. Finally, we received comprehensible regulations containing not so much a set of prohibitions and restrictions, as an instruction of conduct. We wanted it to help children to learn how to take full advantage of their visit to the Museum and play safely. The next stage included cooperation with Dawid Ryski, a graphic designer, who gave the words a beautiful visual form. We also recorded a promotional video with the participation of museum employees. During the project final, the plaque with the regulations was officially unveiled at the ticket office. The new regulations have also been placed in the Little Travellers’ Room (Sala Małego Podróżnika) – a place created specifically for children. From this moment on, each child visiting the museum has the chance to get to know the rules at the very beginning of their visit. For the youngest ones, we have prepared a special chair.
We are proud of the involvement of our young experts! The success of the project is all thanks to them. Thank you Nikola, Kuba, Adrian, Ola, Jakub, Gracjan, Weronika, Lena, Natalia, Nadia, and Alan!
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