“The Head Start team visits each classroom before their Museum field trip and reads a book we created that describes the many fun things the children will do at the Museum. There is a moment in the book where Nori, the Museum dragon, bellows. This is a big word for 3- to 5-year-olds, so we always ask if they know what it means; we take the opportunity to teach literacy when we can. We describe it as speaking with a loud, deep voice and ask them to say the word with us that way. “Belllllowwwwwwwwww!” we say in unison.
A week after we visited Carter Head Start Center, it was time for the children to come play in the Museum, some for the very first time. I was in Play Power with my group when a 4-year-old girl climbed onto the platform under the dome and said “Hellooooo! I just bellowed, like in the book!” I was so happy to see that something we taught them had stuck like that!”
-Jack Read, MuseumCorps educator
“This past December I had the opportunity to spend a few weeks at the Chad Brown Boys & Girls Club. While I was initially nervous about fitting our Learning Club into an existing organizational culture, the experiences I had at Chad Brown have been my happiest so far. This was due in large part to the caring, consistent staff who supported us during our time there. In terms of our contributions, I am most proud of the space we were able to make for building relationships with students. Some of this happened during making time, in which my co-teachers and I worked one-on-one with students, supporting their projects and talking to them about their lives. We also made journals for the students to reflect on their experiences in Learning Club. The students actively used their journals, even without prompting. Reading the journals was a great way to gauge students’ interest in our projects and to learn more about them as people. On our second to last day at Chad Brown I noticed one of our students writing my and my co-teachers’ names on the car she had built. When I asked her why, she said, ‘because you all are special to me.’ More than any skill or piece of knowledge this student gained from Learning Club I am proud that we created an educational space in which she felt safe and cared for.”
-Alison Rutsch, MuseumCorps educator
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