Reflection: A Tool to Deepen Learning and Make It Visible
As professionals, we often assume that the engaging experiences visitors have in our exhibits and programs will lead to long-term learning. But how do we know this is happening, and, moreover, how do we design exhibits, programs and interactions to maximize visitors’ ability to learn from their experiences? At Chicago Children’s Museum a long- standing research collaboration with Northwestern University and Loyola, Chicago University has allowed us to examine how families’ conversational reflections during and after their in-museum experiences impact children’s ability to process and recall what they did during hands-on experiences. Based on our work, this article suggests a number of tips and techniques for supporting children's STEM learning.