Museums Australia Conference Day 1

Tuesday at the Museums Australia Conference – a summary

The Museums Australia conference is being held this year at the University of Adelaide. The University sits alongside the South Australian Museum, Gallery and Library, so we are well-placed in the cultural hub of Adelaide.

The day began with a very warm Welcome to Country by Aunty Josie and an official opening by the Minister for Arts, John Hill. There was also a welcome from Andrew Sayers of the National Museum, who is also the President of Museums Australia.

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Mobile Devices for Learning on Excursion

Mobile Devices for Learning on Excursion

Mobile devices have great potential to transform the excursion experience of students, making it more relevant, personalised and richly informative.  Traditional museums are sometimes limited to panels and labels for providing information and context to their collections, while outdoor museums, like Sovereign Hill, are sometimes limited by the absence of explicit information on panels and labels.  While museums are engaging in innovative and enriching interpretation techniques on top of this, mobile devices offer a broader, and simultaneously more explicit, interpretation experience.

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Social v Traditional Media Marketing

Social Media and Traditional Media can play well together

Image by Colleen Simon for opensource.com

The greatest power of a social media network is the conversation.  Traditional media, on the other hand still holds sway over many people’s desire for reliable news.  As an advocate for the use of social media for networking, professional branding, influence and life-long learning opportunities I am often struck by the lack of trust many organisations still place in it as a tool.  I admire the works of young professionals who advocate change and empowerment, such as Colleen Dilenscneider.

Despite my strong belief in the value of social media tools I do not ignore the great impact traditional media has on public opinion and it’s powerful reach.  A couple of weeks ago I learnt a good lesson in how social media and traditional media can play well together.  It was also a good reaffirmation of the value I’ve placed in building professional networks online.

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TEDx Melbourne – Educational Leadership

TEDx Melbourne 19th July 2012

Last Thursday I headed to the State Library for a TEDx Melbourne event.  I have watched a great number of TED talks online, but this was the first time I had attended a TED event.  I think it’s great that TED has expanded to include regional TEDx events across the world, it’s a nice example of how a successful idea can spread without being overly controlled.

Speaking at this TEDx event, that was specifically on the topic of Educational Leadership, was Will Richardson, Stephen Dinham and Jenny Luca.  All the speakers provided a different message, but all three were focused on improving education for students, particularly improving education beyond the standardised measure of tests.  To me the theme seemed to be preparing students for the unknown real-world future that awaits them.

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What makes a good museum?

Article Reflection – What makes a good museum?

Recently, one of my Twitter colleagues, @stoleasheep, sent me an article: What makes a good museum?  It was good to read an article suggested by someone else, rather than one I had looked for myself.  The article caused me to reflect on my beliefs about what makes a good museum, but also my experiences with museums in both a personal and professional capacity.

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Inspiration for Meaningful Education

With all the talk about NAPLAN and performance based pay for teachers that has been circling around lately I felt the need to seek out some inspirational material to restore my faith in the purpose and possibilities of education.

My first port of call was to return to one of my old favourties, Sir Ken Robinson.  I have always found solace, but also excitement, in his ideas about what makes meaningful education and in this clip I like how he disputes the very foundation of our education system.

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