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The Top Ten Alliance Blog Posts of 2021

Though 2021 was a slightly more normal year than 2020, with mostly open museums gradually regaining visitors, the pandemic still loomed large and colored most conversations. On the Alliance …

The smell of success: how scent became the must-have interpretative tool

In the beautifully lit interior of Chiswick House (pictured, top), cellist Rebecca Knight paused in her playing and put her hand to her nose. It was a pre-arranged sign for the audience …

Integrating Civic Learning Across Museum Education

For years, museums have wondered how to be more relevant and to embrace our identities as civic institutions. At a time when multiple pandemics and crises of governance face the country and …

How Can Education Programs Help Bridge the Digital Divide? 

In this series of posts, EdCom’s Trends Committee is taking a deeper look at emerging phenomena identified in the 2021 edition of TrendsWatch from the Center for the Future of Museums. In …

How Philadelphia Cultural Institutions Embraced Collaboration to Address Opportunity Gaps

If there is a positive outcome of the pandemic’s impact on cultural institutions, it may be the willingness to ideate and take different approaches to our work to ensure that no one is …

Telling overlooked stories at New-York Historical Society

The New-York Historical Society Museum and Library has announced a $140m expansion of its building on Central Park West. This will add more than 70,000 square feet of space to the …

With the Help of MAP, the Manassas Museum Met Its Changing Community’s Needs

Through the Museum Assessment Program, museums gain perspective on how to improve core areas of their operations, with a combination of guided self-reflection and close consultation with an …

Picture of Health: How MFA, St. Petersburg, Reimagined the Museum Program as a Source of Wellness and Healing

As the Curator of Public Programs at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, my professional focus has always been the MFA’s public spaces, performing arts venue, and gardens—not the …

Creating Connections: Merging Lifelong Learning and Music Therapy

The Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) in Phoenix, Arizona, celebrates music and world cultures through a multisensory experience—where guests can “travel” the globe through the sights and …

How a Disturbing Historical Discovery Inspired a New Mission at Old North Foundation

The enduring fame of the Old North Church in Boston began on the evening of April 18, 1775, when church sexton Robert Newman and vestryman Capt. John Pulling Jr. climbed the steeple and …

Why Teachers Want Virtual Field Trips to Stay

On a virtual field trip, students search their screens for signs of movement as they try to spot the elusive macroinvertebrates lurking in a pond water sample. A grid appears over the …

Finding Wonder in a Virtual World

Envision a group of schoolchildren standing before you, giddy with anticipation and excitement. In front of them are two elongated rectangular wooden doors, which, once opened, will …
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