Kids have profound and important relationships to the past, but they don't experience history in the same way as adults. For museum professionals and everyone involved in informal history education and exhibition design, this book is the essential new guide to creating meaningful and memorable connections to the past for children. This vital museum audience possesses many of the same dynamic qualities as trained historian-curiosity, inquiry, empathy for the human experience-yet traditional history exhibitions tend to focus on passive looking in the galleries, giving priority to relaying information through words. D. Lynn McRainey and John Russick bring together top museum professionals to present state-of-the-art research and practice that respects and incorporates kids' developmental stages and learning preferences and the specific ways in which kids connect to history. They provide concrete tools for audience research and evaluation; exhibition development and design; and working with kids as creative consultants. The only book to focus comprehensively on history exhibits for kids, Connecting Kids to History With Museum Exhibitions shows how to enhance the experiences of a vitally important but frequently the least understood museum audience.
D. Lynn McRainey, is the Elizabeth F. Cheney Director of Education at the Chicago History Museum and serves as Project Director for a new Children's Gallery. She has over 20 years experience in museum education, having worked at art, history, and children's museums. She recently served as guest editor for the Journal of Museum Education. She has received a Fellowship in Museum Practice from the Smithsonian Institution, and participated in the NEH Summer Seminar at Yale University and in the Getty Leadership Institute, Museum Leaders: the Next Generation. She has an M.A. in Art History from the University of Virginia. John Russick is a curator at the Chicago History Museum. He has twenty years of experience in a variety of institutions, including the Field Museum and the Smithsonian Institution. One of his most recent exhibitions, Sensing Chicago, was recognized by the American Association of Museums in the 19th Annual Excellence in Exhibition Competition. He has won awards for his exhibit label writing and he currently serves on the board of the American Association of Museum's Curator's Committee.