Museums and the Web

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CyberMuse - Your Art Education Research Site Section: Teachers

National Gallery of Canada
Ecentricarts, Toronto, Ontario
Why: We wish to nominate the re-designed Teachers’ section on CyberMuse because we believe it is innovative, relevant, and of the highest quality. Tailored specifically to teachers and students, from kindergarten to senior high school, this website was designed with feedback from teachers, gathered through focus groups and a survey. The enhanced site significantly expands new methods of exchange between teachers, students, Gallery staff, and artists through user-friendly interactive learning tools and practical teaching resources. The clean design and intuitive functionality respond to the needs of this busy target audience. All National Gallery of Canada websites are offered in both English and French languages. The site offers a breath and depth of content, including: · Grade-specific lesson plans linked to provincial curricula. Each lesson plan includes in-class activities with assessment rubrics, along with extensive contextual information such as: artist biographies, chronologies (art historical timelines), information on artworks, and artwork comparisons. The site also offers How-to-Use CyberMuse guides, explaining the functionality of the interactive floor plan, a tool visitors can use to research and plan self-guided visits, and ready to use self–guides for in-gallery or online use. · Non-curriculum based learning experiences of interest to all users. How-To videos clearly demonstrate art-making techniques that teachers can use to prepare their lessons and share with their students in class. Transcripts for the visually impaired accompany the videos. The new Teachers’ section also allows for dynamic interaction with a wide variety of other sections on CyberMuse, through a Top Ten list targeting specific audiences: children, teens, researchers, and lifelong learners. · User contributed content— the ARTivities section offers teachers a selection of engaging in-class art activities designed by other teachers who want to share their know-how. Teachers can submit ARTivities online that are inspired by up to three artworks from the Gallery’s collection and are designed for students from kindergarten to senior high school. · Exchange between online communities, the Gallery, and artists. The Talk to an Expert section is an online bulletin board that offers teachers an opportunity to engage in dialogue with Gallery staff, such as curators, conservators, and educators. Each month, a Gallery expert explores a topic. Occasionally, in conjunction with special exhibitions, teachers and students are able to chat live on-line with guest artists.

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