Art Works Blog

Ready, Set, Go to a Blue Star Museum!

With more than 2,000 Blue Star Museums to choose from, it can be hard to pick which ones to put on your must-visit list. We can't help you narrow down your choices--we heartily believe the more museums the merrier!--but we can help you and your family make the most out of your visit to whichever museum(s) make the itinerary this summer. Below find a round-up of posts to help you get ready. (And stay tuned for a new post, debuting in August, about things to do after your visit to keep the museum magic going!)

Meeting Artists Through Children’s Books: Here’s a great idea for preparing your kids for their next museum visit: try reading about artists you might encounter at the museum. Not only does this give children the context and understanding of how an artwork developed, but it can help them appreciate why a painter or painting is considered important. There are tons of great artist biographies out there, not to mention entire series. Below are just a few of our favorites, all of which feature artists that can be found at various Blue Star Museums. (TIP: To find out which artists you might meet at a museum, try searching the museum’s collection online. If there hasn’t been a children’s book written about a particular artist, it might be fun to conduct research with your child so they can write up a biography of their own. Bring it to the museum so your child can sketch the artist’s work—instant illustrations!) MORE

Visiting Museums with Children with Special Needs: It’s not unusual for a child to feel wary of museums, which often come with jostling crowds, new visual or multimedia experiences, and expectations of best behavior—no touching, no running, and inside voices only. For a child with special needs however, this can all compound into a positively overwhelming or even frightening experience. But is that a reason to avoid museums altogether? Absolutely not. Rather, it’s simply a matter of being prepared. We asked accessibility specialists and educators at Blue Star Museums around the country to provide advice for parents of children with special needs on how to plan the best museum visit possible for their family. MORE

The Importance of Taking Children to Museums: There’s no shortage of research indicating the benefits of museum visits for children. They can provide memorable, immersive learning experiences, provoke imagination, introduce unknown worlds and subject matter, and offer unique environments for quality time with family. Curious to hear more from people in the field, we asked educators from Blue Star Museums around the country to tell us why they think it’s important to take children to museums. MORE …

Preparing Children for Art Museums: Without a doubt, stepping into an art museum can be overwhelming for a kid: there are rules to follow, unfamiliar artists' names, and subject matter that might not seem relatable at first glance. Which is why preparing a child ahead of time can be crucial to ensuring the experience is positive. With a little advance planning, art museums can be extraordinarily rewarding for children, and can help lay the foundation for an interest in the arts. We asked educators from Blue Star Museums to share advice on what adults can do ahead of time to prepare children for their upcoming visit. MORE…

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