Educators Smithsonian Education
The Museum Idea
Getting Started

Good teaching, writes Smithsonian curator Dennis O’Toole in this Art to Zoo, “is the ability to get student to see the old as new and the new as old. . . . It is the capacity to get students to find the familiar in the unfamiliar, the known in the unknown: to understand what they see.”

There is no better place for this instruction, O’Toole says, than a museum, with its objects that are “always the real thing.” He presents a lesson plan in which students take on the work of museum professionals: each student creates a “Museum of Me” and the entire class builds exhibition on a subject relevant to the curriculum.

The issue also includes an article on student filmmaking.

Note: This is an archival publication dating back to 1978 and any supplements or suggestions for off-site education may not be available.

Download "Art to Zoo: The Museum Idea" (PDF).

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The Museum Idea

Art to Zoo is produced by the Smithsonian Center for Education and Museum Studies. Teachers may duplicate the materials for educational purposes.

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