So suggests David Truss... 

At David's education blog, he quotes Bruce Wellman as saying:

“Mental models organized by an entrenched image of what teaching is will stay firmly in place until we move the conversation to an intense focus on learning… At this point, we appear to have a 19th century curriculum, 20th century buildings and organizations and 21st century students facing an undefined future.”

What about museums? Many museums are stuck in nineteenth century buildings and twentieth century ideas and are struggling to become both 'agents of change' and 'forces for change' (as noted in the blog post comments).

He suggests we question everything we assume about school education and learning and provides a useful set of starting points. I have taken this list and applied them as I think they relate to museum education and learning:

  • Why fill a museum with individual educational rooms?
  • Why have a unidirectional ‘front’ of the room? Why not have everything on wheels? Why have students 'tucked away'?
  • Why schedule visits in blocks? Why not have more self-guided meanderings?
  • Why design the visit schedule based on instructional time?
  • Why not address cross-curricula ‘big issues’ in programs?
  • How best do we ‘test’ a student’s understanding?
  • How do we shift to be focused primarily on learning?
  • How do we integrate technology meaningfully? What’s coming up next? How do we prepare for this?
  • Where is museum education being done ‘right’? What models are working? Who should we be paying attention to?

What do you think? How is museum education faring?