Museum School

What is a Museum School?

The Museum School, is a teaching model successfully demonstrated in urban elementary schools across the nation. Students are engaged in exploration, discovery, and in the active creation of projects, artifacts, and exhibits that utilize the skills and knowledge gained through both formal and informal partnerships with multiple learning institutions.
When the concept is present in a traditional school building, a visitor may feel as if they are walking into a museum and notice the prominent display of student projects, the use of descriptive language in student work, and students at work engaged in hands-on investigations and creative expressions. Field experiences and docent visits, accompanied by pre- and post-activities, focus on selected objects, artifacts, and exhibits aligned to academic objectives to enhance classroom subject matter and place knowledge into meaningful contexts.

The following elements foster successful implementation:

  • In-depth partnerships with museums and non-formal learning institutions including zoos, aquaria, galleries, performing arts venues, historic homes, and scientific organizations to support the museum learning model through professional development and student programming
  • Commitment on the part of the school faculty and administration to support frequent visits to related institutions and by museum educational staff to support in-class curriculums
  • Integration of authentic, student created artifacts and exhibits into the curriculum for prominent display throughout the school building of individual and classroom projects

Information on the National Association of Museum Schools.