Skip to main content
placeholder image

Evaluating the Effectiveness of Existing Experiences and Educational Programs in a Children’s Museum: Learnings from Extensive Stakeholder Feedback

Journal Article


Abstract


  • This study aimed to determine: 1) whether a children’s museum called the Early Start Discovery Space provides an environment for developing critical learning skills in children, and 2) ways to improve the learning and engagement that occurs in the Early Start Discovery Space. Four-hundred caregivers (mothers, fathers, grandparents) completed an online survey regarding their child’s attendance at the Early Start Discovery Space, including their favorite experiences, and changes in their child as a result of visiting the Space. Eighteen focus groups were conducted, involving forty-nine caregivers, to further explore what children gained from the Early Start Discovery Space and the ways in which they utilize the Space. Nineteen “walk-up” one-on-one interviews were also conducted, to further elicit information about how the Early Start Discovery Space assisted in the development of early learning skills. Caregivers conveyed that their child’s attendance at the Early Start Discovery Space assisted in the development of critical learning skills, such as imaginative play, interaction with peers, problem solving, and language development. Caregivers also indicated that learning and engagement could be improved through the inclusion of more activities that facilitate individual creativity, promote different cultural perspectives, and increase opportunities for socialization. Children can develop critical learning skills through engagement in a children’s museum. Strategies for greater learning and engagement should be implemented to foster further benefits for children and caregivers alike.

Publication Date


  • 2020

Citation


  • Cronin, L. P., Peden, M., Taylor, E. Karen., Okely, A. D. & Johnson, M. C. (2020). Evaluating the Effectiveness of Existing Experiences and Educational Programs in a Children’s Museum: Learnings from Extensive Stakeholder Feedback. The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum, 13 (3), 15-29.

Number Of Pages


  • 14

Start Page


  • 15

End Page


  • 29

Volume


  • 13

Issue


  • 3

Place Of Publication


  • United States

Abstract


  • This study aimed to determine: 1) whether a children’s museum called the Early Start Discovery Space provides an environment for developing critical learning skills in children, and 2) ways to improve the learning and engagement that occurs in the Early Start Discovery Space. Four-hundred caregivers (mothers, fathers, grandparents) completed an online survey regarding their child’s attendance at the Early Start Discovery Space, including their favorite experiences, and changes in their child as a result of visiting the Space. Eighteen focus groups were conducted, involving forty-nine caregivers, to further explore what children gained from the Early Start Discovery Space and the ways in which they utilize the Space. Nineteen “walk-up” one-on-one interviews were also conducted, to further elicit information about how the Early Start Discovery Space assisted in the development of early learning skills. Caregivers conveyed that their child’s attendance at the Early Start Discovery Space assisted in the development of critical learning skills, such as imaginative play, interaction with peers, problem solving, and language development. Caregivers also indicated that learning and engagement could be improved through the inclusion of more activities that facilitate individual creativity, promote different cultural perspectives, and increase opportunities for socialization. Children can develop critical learning skills through engagement in a children’s museum. Strategies for greater learning and engagement should be implemented to foster further benefits for children and caregivers alike.

Publication Date


  • 2020

Citation


  • Cronin, L. P., Peden, M., Taylor, E. Karen., Okely, A. D. & Johnson, M. C. (2020). Evaluating the Effectiveness of Existing Experiences and Educational Programs in a Children’s Museum: Learnings from Extensive Stakeholder Feedback. The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum, 13 (3), 15-29.

Number Of Pages


  • 14

Start Page


  • 15

End Page


  • 29

Volume


  • 13

Issue


  • 3

Place Of Publication


  • United States