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Museum Learning Experiences

Jennifer Chu
Former Assistant Curator I (Extension Services)
, Hong Kong Museum of Art
2008

Group Photo 
"Youth Docent Pilot Scheme" Group Photo

A museum is charged with many responsibilities. Paramount among them is the function of providing the public a variety of alternative learning experiences. Creating a context for engaging learning experiences can be achieved through various means, including organizing field trips, visits, and interviews in addition to the exhibition of artefacts and works of art. A student's first-hand experience and active participation in any learning experience is an important way of acquiring knowledge.

Designing a truly unique environment and providing access to such works of art are what truly distinguish a museum's mission. Although museums are not meant to replace formal schooling, they can foster close partnerships with educational bodies.

Indeed, museums are places defined by free choice and learning opportunities. It is well known that some people learn better through their sense of vision while others, their sense of hearing or touch. The Museum of Art is happy to offer a variety of services to meet the needs of different learners and audiences.

Most schools book guided tour services when they visit the Museum of Art. Leading up to the visit, we encourage teachers to state their learning objectives so that our docents can introduce exhibits that will enhance the learning experience as much as possible. We sometimes organize special lectures so that teachers can have a better understanding of the exhibition to facilitate their classroom activities.

There are currently 137 docents serving the Museum of Art and their services have often received compliments from the public. We are now working on a Youth Docent Pilot Scheme with the Po Chiu Catholic Secondary School. 19 students have been divided into 5 groups, each with an experienced docent in the role of mentor. Students have selected the exhibits they are interested in studying and will join their mentors in conducting public guided tours during the last stage of the scheme. Your support and encouragement are essential to this effort.

To enhance the exhibition "Made in Hong Kong", we have invited tertiary, secondary, primary and kindergarten students to participate in creative painting activities. Their works will be displayed in rotation on the outer walls of the Museum during the exhibition period.

It is our hope that museums can continue to provide the public an enjoyable learning experience and that they remain a pleasant place for visitors to enjoy, learn and explore.

Museum Learning Experiences

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