One of the most exciting parts of visiting a museum is the feeling of wonder when you encounter a new or significant object and learn about its story. For many of our younger visitors, some of the most interesting objects come from the not too distant past.
Imagine that you had grown up only using smartphones – you might be shocked to learn that people in the past had to spin a dial for each individual number before making a call. Or that you had to remember the number off by heart!
In the upcoming Tim and Gina Fairfax Discovery Centre young minds will be encouraged to consider how the items that they use every day are different from objects that did the same job in the past. By imaging how they would use each object in their own lives, children can gain an understanding about what life may have been like throughout history.
Some of the objects that will be on display look similar to what we use today, but others are a bit tricky. To help our budding historians to figure out what each item is, we will also have a very special object label which was filmed with seven of the Museum’s youngest visitors.
Throughout the National Museum of Australia’s new galleries we have taken a fresh approach to displaying information. Our goal is to make learning about objects’ stories as engaging as possible, while being accessible to everyone. Video content is a great way to achieve this.
In the Discovery Centre this video will help young visitors realise that learning about history can be fun, while also providing more information about some interesting objects.
We also had a lot of fun making it! We were very lucky to be joined by Alec, Amelia, Dylan, Eleanor, James, Joey and Sierra. Each of the children had fantastic insights into the objects that they were shown, and we can’t wait for you to see their responses when you visit the Discovery Centre next year.
In the meantime, if you have a young historian at home who might be interested in learning about objects from the past, why not show them this one and see what they think it does? Here’s a hint: it wasn’t used for people!
In our collection