How can our informal education sites and programs include everyone? It’s a question we all wrestle with. Remember how last week’s guest, Elise McFarland, described teaching about California’s Spanish missions to young visitors who might have roots in Mexican, European, Native, African, Asian, and Catholic communities – all of whom have a very different take on the mission history?1
Elise’s experience illustrates inclusion – making sure that all of the intersecting threads of our communities are represented, reflected, and welcomed within educational spaces.
On this week’s podcast episode, I talk with two Explainer-Facilitators from the Exploratorium, San Francisco’s storied palace of science, art, and perception. Gwen Payne and Gianna Calamar both participate in the Exploratorium’s diversity and inclusion efforts, and we talk a lot today about how including everyone improves the visitor experience and, of course, increases learning.
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Not to mention, of course, that most visitors are members of more than one of those communities simultaneously – and that individuals have feelings that may not align with everyone else within their communities! Informal education is a challenging assignment. ↩︎