Paper $34.95 ISBN: 9781933253923 Published February 2014

Teaching the Museum

Careers in Museum Education

Edited by Leah M. Melber

Teaching the Museum

Edited by Leah M. Melber

Distributed for American Alliance of Museums Press

148 pages | 6 x 9 | © 2014
Paper $34.95 ISBN: 9781933253923 Published February 2014
Education departments in museums of all kinds serve millions of students and adult learners every year, using the objects and other resources of the museum to teach and inspire. The rapidly growing field of museum education provides hands-on, experiential learning, with museum educators often working closely with local school boards to supplement and enhance public school curricula. In Teaching the Museum, twenty contributors from across the exciting field of museum education offer innovative insights, anecdotes, and advice for best practices on how to realize the museum’s full potential as an educational institution. From the balance between education and entertainment, to meeting the needs of both one’s audience and the collection, to understanding connections between how we learn and how exhibits and programming are designed, this book will appeal to museum educators, students, and teachers seeking to learn more about the field.


Leah M. Melber, Ph.D.


Section 1: Climbing the Ladder


1. Say “Yes”…and Figure It Out Later

Leah M. Melber Ph.D.


2. When You are Offered the Perfect Job You Never Wanted, Take It

Brad Irwin


3. Museum Outsiders and the Value of an External Lens

Kathleen Tinworth


4. It’s Normal to Ask: What Am I Doing Here?

Katarina Ivanišin Kardum


5. Tap into Your Passion

Marjorie Schwarzer



K. Tierney Sneeringer


Section 2: Doing Your Best


6. Don’t Just Color Outside the Lines – Imagine and Draw Your Own Picture

Lynn McRainey


7. Speak The Local Language

William B. Crow


8. You Work for the People, Not the Institution

Beverly Serrell


9. Be a Kick-Ass, Not a Kiss-Ass

Sheri Bernstein


10. Volunteering Has Value

Sarah Marcotte



Caitlin Kreiman Lill


Section 3: When Obstacles Arise


11. You Made a Mistake.  Now What?

Celeste DeWald


12. Beware of Marriage Proposals

Sarah Alvarez


13. Evolve as a Museum Leader: Be a Catalyst!

Paula Gandopadhyay


14. Sometimes You Have to Be a Little Subversive

Ted Lind



K. Tierney Sneeringer


Section 4: Looking Forward


15. Yes, You Should Go to Grad School

Ben Garcia


16. You Don’t Have to Be Married to Your Work

Elee Wood, Ph.D.


17. Life is Short, So Seize the Moment and Go with Your Instincts

Marie Bourke, Ph.D.



Caitlin Kreiman Lill


Then, Now, Next: Transferring a Lifetime of Careers

Greg Stevens






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