Global Eras Museum Assignment
Learning to love museums
Students in Mr. Bower's Global Eras class recently completed a class project that called for them to visit and evaluate two museums. Students visited museums of their choosing, then evaluated their experiences and made a presentation to the class.
The assignment: Local Museum Tour
You will complete a project showcasing two museums from Philadelphia or the surrounding area. It will be required that you visit each of the museums and explore specific exhibits, based on the background information that you research ahead of time.
I was satisfied with the end result of this project. I got to learn about the history of two museums and then experience them in person. It was really cool to see some of the things that I had discovered through my research. I am also proud of the video that I made to give an overview of the trip. I felt like it gave a good idea of what the trip was like in a way that words would not be able to describe. I came out of this project with a lot of knew knowledge about museums and about specific exhibits.
My most important learning was that not all museum exhibits are created equal. Usually going to a museum isn’t something that I would look forward to, especially an art museum. However, I found that it really depends on what exhibit you go to. When going to museums before I didn’t really get to pick where to go and they weren’t particularly interesting as a result. Being able to pick something that was interesting to me completely changed this idea and made the whole experience enjoyable. Going to the art museum was fun for me because I got to see modern art instead of random paintings of people from the 1800s sitting around a table.
If I was asked to do this project again I would conduct my research before going to the museum. Because of the way the scheduling of the trip worked out, I was not able to complete my research in time for the trip. Doing the research beforehand would have allowed me to reflect on my research while visiting the museums and make connections to it. As a result of researching afterwards I had to think back to what I saw during the trip and reflect in that way. One thing I would do the same is bring a camera and take pictures and videos of the experience. Memory can only go so far, so having videos to look back on is really important to me. The video that I made at the end was a fun way to summarize the trip and remember it.
I enjoyed visiting the different museums. The Michener Museum was similar to other art museums I have been to but it was different because it had wood sculptures, digital art, and other types of art, not just paintings and photography. Fonthill Castle was unlike anything I have been to before. It was so neat to see all the different tiles that Henry Mercer created and how dedicated he was to make his castle perfect. He had to shape his couch just right so that it could fit into the wall. He also had to do that with a door that did not quite fit in with the concrete walls. The Mercer Museum showed more about how unique Henry was in his construction and with what interested him.
I am satisfied with the result of the project but I wish I could have taken pictures or videos in the castle because it was so interesting. If I had to do this again, I would probably give myself a little more time at the museums because I felt rushed. Also, I would go back to the Fonthill Castle because they have different types of tours where I could learn about the rooms that I did not go into on the first tour. My most important learning was that there are interesting and fun museums close to me and I should take advantage of them more often.