CMU School of Drama

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Where Are They Now - Celebrating Three Decades of Children's Museum Design

Jack Rouse Associates: Blog: Over the past 30 years, JRA has had the honor and pleasure of working with children’s museums from Sioux City to Singapore. While they may be different in location and educational focus, all have the same mission – to engage and inspire youth.

Many of these museums were created and are still helmed by passionate volunteers, whose biggest reward is to see the smiles on their young visitors’ faces. We salute their spirit and applaud their dedication.


Katherine Sharpless said...

This article was pretty heartwarming and inspiring. First of all, theses museums have done a great job combining usual children's museum expectations- sandbox, baby dolls, etc.- with intense design and technology- 3D virtual aquarium, augmented reality, and more. Reading the reviews and museum statements, the collaborators seem so rewarded by using their skills in education and design to benefit their community. I also appreciated how the honored museums weren't all (or any) from fancy, upperclass areas, but rather from places across the country like Iowa, Georgia, and Illinois. This was briefly mentioned, and I hope it exists in more than the one museum, but some exhibits were tailored to children with special needs and learning disabilities. I imagine these exhibits in particular are great resources for parents who may not be able to afford special needs babysitting or tutoring, and can turn to the museum to learn and have fun as a family. I would love to design for one of these causes and hope to read more about interactive museums in the future.

Angel Zhou said...

This article does nothing but evoke the strongest childhood nostalgia and happiness in me. Seeing all of the exhibits and activities that are offered at museums other than my beloved Boston Children’s Museum remind me of my childhood experiences playing and exploring the same way that the children in the images are. I find it remarkable that the highlighted museums are largely maintained by volunteers and have managed to reach hundreds of thousands of visitors each as a result of these unpaid helpers. The Dublin Children’s Museum’s accomplishment of over 1 million visitors is especially incredible, and I wish these museums nothing but success as time moves forwards.

Additionally, though this is just a nitpick, I have to comment on the article’s background: the formatting of the page is very distracting. I would much appreciate a solid-colored backdrop with the additional toolbar tucked a little farther away than directly to the right of the article. All the design in the website really takes away from the importance of the article’s content – celebrating incredible foundations all over the globe that exist for the purpose of childhood growth and exploration.

Chris Calder said...

The reason that I decided to write on this article is because last night was my Fraternities formal and it was at a children’s museum. The funny thing is that every time I go to a children’s museum I have more fun looking at all the cool design and architecture than any other museum. I find it very interesting to see what these artists come up with. They take ordinary objects and somehow turn them into an exhibit. I can only imagine the time that goes into these and how much “outside the box” thinking needs to go one. I think that a successful museum is defined by being able to keep these kids entertained but also the adults entertained throughout the experience. After looking at these artists work it was very clear that they had some serious talent and ability to make these interesting places. I look forward to seeing more children’s museums in the future even though I just turned 20.