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ERIC Number: ED419891
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Museum Schools: Institutional Partnership and Museum Learning.
King, Kira S.
Over the past 10 years, a handful of museums and school districts have joined forces to create an innovation that blends formal and informal learning, the museum school. As yet, there is no commonly accepted definition of the term, but such schools can be described as partnerships that create a curriculum that embeds the district-mandated learning goals into long-term projects that require students to create objects, exhibits, or museums. To develop a broader understanding of the museum-school phenomenon, this paper uses a qualitative case study methodology to examine four museum schools (in three school districts), create descriptive terminology, and develop continua of museum-school collaboration. The schools studied are: (1) the New York City Museum School; (2) the Museum Magnet Schools, St. Paul (Minnesota); (3) the Robert Brent Elementary School (Smithsonian Institution), District of Columbia; and (4) the Stuart-Hobson Middle School (Smithsonian Institution), District of Columbia. The units of analysis were the schools "as wholes" and one class from each. Thirty-two interviews with participants provided additional data. Five patterns of museum learning were common in these schools: (1) museum process apprenticeships; (2) creation of apprentice researchers; (3) knowledge-building communities; (4) project-enhanced learning; and (5) student ownership of projects. In all four schools, the district-mandated curriculum was incorporated into museum themes or units. The partnerships involved a high degree of interdependence among the collaborating institutions, although the details of the partnerships varied with the schools. A "continuum of partnership structure" was developed as increasing levels of partnership moved from institutional cooperation through strategic alliance to virtual corporation. Museum schools are a new approach to building learning environments that deserve greater study. (Contains 1 figure, 2 tables, and 20 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A