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Mission Statement of SEEC’s Educational Outreach Program
The mission of SEEC’s Educational Outreach Program is to share its museum-based approach to learning, to positively influence the practices used in educating young children in early childhood and museum settings.
Museum Magic is a unique museum-based curriculum that serves as the foundation for the SEEC program. Through licensing, Museum Magic can offer a framework for museums or schools developing a new object-based program for young children. The curriculum is currently being expanded to include community resources outside of museums as well. It is also possible for SEEC to custom design resource materials to support a new educational initiative. For more information on licensing the SEEC Curriculum, please contact Kimberlee Kiehl, Executive Director, at 202.633.1394 or by sending an e-mail to KiehlK@si.edu.
Through educational outreach, the museum education team shares its expertise in using museum exhibits and artwork in conjunction with children’s literature and everyday objects to teach young children. SEEC offers information about its museum-based approach to learning through seminars and professional training classes, written materials, teaching kits, and customized consulting.
Overview of SEEC Seminars:
Learning Through Objects: Museums and Young Children: March 14-15, 2013
During this two-day program, participants learn how museum objects, such as paintings, sculptures, an African headrest, and an old-time chestnut roaster, can help children as young as two or three understand their world. The program features hands-on exercises with museum objects, lectures, discussions, and gallery experiences that introduce early childhood educators to the magic of museums and help museum educators forge more creative encounters with the youngest museum-goers.
Creating Collections with Young Children: Friday, June 14, 2013
Participants learn about children as natural collectors and discover new ways to nurture this innate curiosity by creating collections in the classroom that combine literature, art, and objects. Through hands-on experiences and museum visits, this one-day seminar introduces teaching strategies that encourage the use of collections to help children develop sorting, classification, observation, and analytic skills. Teachers learn to present new opportunities for children to explore the world through real objects and create meaningful collections in the classroom. This one-day workshop is an excellent introduction to the magic of museums
Professional Development Series Museum Magic: Museum-Based Approach to Teaching History, Math, and Literacy to Young Children
This four-part series introduces educators to SEEC’s method of teaching through actual museum visits and encounters with real objects, children’s literature, and art. In this course, participants learn to plan effective museum visits and classroom-based lessons to support learning in content areas such as literacy, math, and history.
Professional Development for Teachers
Two Hour Workshops at a Location of Your Choice ($650 for up to 20 participants)
Inspired by the Greats: Process Art Experiences for Young Children – Effective art experiences for young children offer opportunities to develop both receptive and expressive language. A discussion of current theories in art education for young children, emphasizing process-oriented art making, will focus on the value of this approach and how this contributes to a child’s learning. Teachers will be introduced to artists and their techniques, children’s books about artists, and art making experiences. Session leaders will model techniques for engaging children in talking about art, using examples of fine art in reproductions for the classroom.
Connections and Collections: Engaging Young Minds in Math – Basic mathematical thinking is natural for children in that they sort, organize, and classify from a very early age. This type of thinking is integral to understanding math concepts. This session will build an understanding of how children use sorting and classifying to understand their world and how to nurture this inclination in the classroom. The concept of developing collections in the classroom as a teaching strategy will be introduced.
Never Too Young: Approaching Culturally Sensitive Content with Children – In today’s global society it is important that children learn about others and their cultural traditions. This session will illustrate universal themes that are common to all people and cultures as a strategy for thinking about others, and will then offer an approach that honors differences while being careful not to promote stereotypes. Although many artifacts and works of art offer authentic experiences for children to become acquainted with diverse cultures, some objects need to be presented with an awareness of culturally sensitive content. The idea of developing a positive and accepting attitude about differences will be part of the conversation.
Spaces that Inspire Learning – A child’s environment can play an important role in building critical thinking and social emotional skills. Teachers will consider how the classroom environment can be viewed as an active teaching tool but also a tool for communicating to children, parents, and visitors.
SEEC offers consulting that is customized to each client’s needs. SEEC works with a wide range of organizations, from museums planning early childhood initiatives to community-based organizations seeking expertise in early childhood learning. Consultants from SEEC also support schools interested in implementing more effective field trips or districts seeking an arts-based or object-based approach to learning in their curriculum. We offer a wide variety of services that are customized to fit the needs of organizations interested in teaching young children in the museum environment or using museum-based methodology.
Customized consulting may include, but is not limited to:
Costs are determined by the scope of the project. For more information on SEEC’s consulting services, please contact Kimberlee Kiehl, Executive Director, at 202.633.1399 or KiehlK@si.edu.
Join the SEEC Educational Outreach Program listserv to receive information on upcoming trainings and other opportunities related to early childhood education. To join the listserv simply send an email with your email address included in the text section to KiehlK@si.edu.