Below are a few guiding principles gleaned from writings by Lynn Dierking, John Falk, George Hein, Jay Rounds, and Daniel Spock:
- Visitors do not view museums as classrooms for learning so much as smorgasbords of content from which they construct their own meanings. We fear this reality but we should not discount it.
- Museums provide unique environments for engaging with ideas, sparking the imagination, and inspiring further inquiry.
- Rather than presenting a single version of "truth," visitors may be best served when museums facilitate informed discussion incorporating multiple points of view.
- "Minds-on" interactivity is even better than "hands-on."
- Social interaction with group members, fellow visitors, and knowledgeable mentors is a crucial part of museum learning.
- Successful museum learning is about making connections - social, emotional, intellectual...